Mustangs move on to the next level with a high note
Treasure Mountain International School (TMIS) recognized its best graduating students on June 5 at the Eccles Center. Nearly a third of the school’s ninth-graders received awards commending them for their academic excellence or their spirit of citizenship.
It is the second year that TMIS has held these awards in lieu of a commencement ceremony. Before the school system was restructured, eighth-graders graduated with the requisite decorum, but since TMIS ninth graders are frequently involved at Park City High School, a graduation did not seem appropriate to either administrators or teachers. The awards ceremony became a forum in which teachers could express their gratitude to students and achievement could be recognized.
The school also recognized the many students who took part in the International Baccalaureate program by giving them certificates. Thirty-one students completed personal projects and three years of community service in order to satisfy the rigorous standards of the program.
"What’s really impressive about these students is that the average GPA is 3.817 30 of the best students in the school were on the stage this morning. They’re doing the personal project in addition to their seven or eight classes. That certificate represents the cream of the crop," said TMIS teacher Shannon Hase, who presented the student awards. Only a third of the students who started the IB program were able to finish.
Other awards presented to the students during the ceremony reflected their achievements in a light-hearted fashion. Principal Bob O’Connor pointed to the Keepin’ it Real Award, for instance, as a good example of recognition designed to commend a student not just for academic proficiency, but also for demonstrating maturity. The award, presented by the math department, honored students who kept math classes honest by using their senses of humor at appropriate times. The science department also demonstrated a little bit of creativity, awarding students for their affinities for genetics and desire to save the world. One student received the "Steve Irwin Memorial Award" for her knowledge of animals given in honor of the famed "Crocodile Hunter" who had a demonstrated talent with reptiles.
Ninth-graders progressing into Park City High School (PCHS) also got a chance to celebrate their move at a luau dance on Thursday night. This summer, they can expect to continue their transition into high school with a barbecue at PCHS in August. Many students have already worked with PCHS counselors on their schedule for next Fall. O’Connor said the saddest, and the best, part of watching the students take the next step is that "a lot of the ninth-graders begin to come out of their shell, there’s a group of kids you get to know really well. What’s enjoyable is watching them transform into adults."
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