By Adam Navarro
The 2020-21 school year has been anything but normal, especially for the senior class of 2021. Between the usual hassle of senioritis and applying for scholarships, they’ve had to deal with face masks, e-Learning and quarantines.
Through it all, though, Alyssa Gregory reigns as valedictorian. In fact, she never spent so much as a day out of the top spot in the academic rankings.
While being the valedictorian is a tremendous honor, Gregory said that she tried not to worry about it too much.
“While I was never stressed out about becoming valedictorian, it feels great that I was able to achieve this honor,” Gregory said. “I have never really found any subject to be particularly difficult for me, so becoming valedictorian was primarily a matter of simply finding the time necessary to complete all of my assignments to the best of my ability.”
This accomplishment is made even more special due to the circumstances in which Gregory accomplished it: through a pandemic. Gregory said time management has made a big difference in handling her school work in this unpredictable school year.
“Between the uncertainty of the pandemic and the rigor of many of my classes this semester, I have had to find new ways to manage my time in order to finish all of my assignments,” Gregory said. “I also had to find ways to teach myself the material whenever I struggled to understand something, especially during the lockdown.”
While steadily maintaining the top spot in her class, Gregory has also gotten involved in extracurricular activities including concert and pep band all four years of high school, Academic Skill Bowl team her sophomore year, and Academic Super Bowl team the last three years as captain for the math team.
Band teacher Mr. Zach Enos has had Alyssa in class all three years he’s been here.
“Alyssa Gregory is a BEAST in band. I’m honestly not sure that I’ve ever heard her play anything wrong. Even as a sophomore when I first got here I was like ‘Whoa, she can play,’” Enos stated.
Enos also noted that Gregory is always the first one back from the breaks he gives the class.
Alyssa’s achievements have made her parents, Angie and Michael Gregory, proud.
“Alyssa is such an amazing young lady who has such a unique personality that represents her individuality,” her mother Angie said. “She has not let this year throw her off track and has been able to stay focused on everything she applies herself to.”
Her parents said they first knew Alyssa could be the valedictorian when they saw that she was ranked first during her freshman year, when the rankings first came out.
Outside of school, Gregory enjoys playing video games and playing with her dog. She is also a part of the Apprentice Company at Dazzle Dance. There, she performs tap dances at concerts and recitals.
Gregory’s plan after high school is to attend Purdue University and major in genetics. She plans to become a geneticist to help better understand the causes and treatments for genetic diseases, as well as gain a better understanding of how the human genome functions.
Alyssa Gregory’s academic career at Delta High School is second to none in the Class of 2021. But it’s not just what she did, but how she did it. Her band teacher Mr. Enos said it best.
“She is a walking testimonial to going the extra mile and doing your best.”