Sequim High School principal Shawn Langston, left, introduces SHS’s four Class of 2018 valedictorians: (from left) Kiara Pierson, Audrey Hughes, Grace Tolberd and Jazz Weller. Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

Sequim High School principal Shawn Langston, left, introduces SHS’s four Class of 2018 valedictorians: (from left) Kiara Pierson, Audrey Hughes, Grace Tolberd and Jazz Weller. Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

SHS grads’ scholarship take is more than $4.7 million

Sequim High School graduation

When: 6 p.m. Friday, June 8 (ticket-holders admitted starting at 5 p.m., no reserved seating)

Where: SHS stadium, East Fir Street

Ticket pick-up: Today (Wednesday, June 6); only students allowed to pick up

As the cost of post-high school education and training rise for local graduates, the Sequim community once again rises to meet the challenge.

A little more than a week from accepting their diplomas, Sequim High School’s Class of 2018 took time to accept some financial help from local community groups, institutions of higher learning and branches of the U.S. military at the annual Scholarship Awards event on May 30.

In all, Sequim graduates-to-be earned nearly $4.8 million in scholarships — setting a new school record — with more than $350,000 coming from local entities such as clubs and civic groups, foundations, businesses, churches and the like.

Many of the scholarships came from such groups who selected scholarship recipients based on their need and background as detailed in Sequim High’s annual scholarship notebook program. Sequim High School principal Shawn Langston once again thanked SHS career and guidance counselor Mitzi Sanders for her efforts to maintain the notebook program.

“I’ve been in four different districts,” Langston said. “This is unique.”

As in previous years, SHS’s graduates from this year’s class have varied interests and it shows in their next steps from high school. Ten individuals from the class are receiving some sort of funding from U.S. military branches. In that group is Kiara Pierson, one of Sequim’s four valedictorians who will follow her brother Grant (Class of 2017) in attending the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York.

Lieutenant Colonel Demaris Johanek, U.S. Army Retired, lauded Pierson for her impressive interview that helped lead to her appointment.

“I would not want to meet her in a dark alley,” Johanek joked.

“Actually, if you did see Kiara in a dark alley, she would say, ‘How can I help you?’” Langston added.

Co-valedictorian Grace Tolberd is headed to Pacific University in Oregon with nearly $150,000 in scholarships while SHS’s two other valedictorians — Aubrey Hughes and Jazz Weller — are both headed to Brigham Young University. Like Pierson, each boast 4.0 grade-point-averages.

In keeping with tradition, Langston offered the evening’s smallest scholarships, bequeathing $1 to Central Washington University-bound Gavin Velarde for removing his hat, and another $1 bill University of Washington student-to-be Mathew Craig for giving out the first thank-you note.

Not all scholarships were of the light-hearted nature, however. Mary Jane Duncan presented two Bob Duncan Memorial Scholarship awards, to Chloe Ann Erickson and Levi Foy, in honor of her late husband.

“When I look back through scholarship notebooks … what I look for is an individual (who’s) had a tough time, for whatever reason,” Duncan said. “But they made a choice to work hard and to finish strong.”

Sequim High’s graduation is set for 6 p.m. Friday, June 8, at the SHS athletic stadium off of East Fir Street.

2018 Sequim High School scholarships:

Andrea Albaugh — SEA Future Teacher Scholarship $500, Shipley Senior Center $1,000, Agnew Helpful Neighbors Club $3,000, Eastern Washington University Merit Scholarship $4,000, EWU CALE Future Educator Scholarship $1,700; Eastern Washington University

Haelee Andres — Jane Q Miller & Gertrude Greenside Scholarship $8,000, Blue Whole Shirley Foss Art Scholarship $500, Olympic Peninsula Art Association scholarship $1,000, Boys & Girls Club Maytag Scholarship $1,500, Olympic Driftwood Sculptors Scholarship $2,000, Central Washington University Merit Scholarship $8,000, ACWU Educational Grants $53,052; Central Washington University

Aaron Andrews-Kinch — Sequim Association of Realtors $1,000, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, Washington Council of Firefighters $1,000; Peninsula College

Annabelle Armstrong — Charlotte Kirby Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Willamette University Olympic Scholarship $7,600, Willamette University Grant $17,400, Willamette University Trustees’ Scholarship $100,000; Willamette University

Nathalie Arreguin — William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000; Peninsula College

Olivia Barrett — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $4,000, SEF Woodward Ward Scholarship $2,000, UW-Seattle University Scholarship $16,000, University of Washington Undergrad University Grants $66,992; University of Washington

Sophia Barrett — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $4,000, University of Washington Seattle Grants $9,880, UW-Seattle Husky Promise Scholarship $73,112; University of Washington

Emma Beeson — Sequim Association of Realtors $1,200; Peninsula College

Joseph Benjamin — US Navy Education Benefits/GI Bill $180,000, US Navy Nuclear Power Program Bonus $16,000; U.S. Navy

Addison Berg — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $4,000, University of Southern California Scholarship $15,000, USC University Grant $132,884; University of Southern California

Maia Binswanger — Clallam County Bar Association $750, Experience WSU Scholarship $1,000, WSU Academic Grants $59,916; Washington State University

Noelle Bittner — William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, WSU Academic Achievement Award $8,000; Washington State University

Kelley Bluthenthal —S EF Ray & June Robinson STEM Scholarship $10,000, Coast Guard Foundation Westbrook Scholar Award $2,500, SEF Film Festival Scholarship $2,250, Port Angeles Eagles Auxiliary #483 $1,000; Peninsula College

Angela Carrillo-Burge — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $6,000, Sunland Owners Association $4,000, Experience WSU Scholarship $1,000, WSU University Achievement Award $8,000; Washington State University

Josiah Carter — Shipley Senior Center $1,000, PLU Academic Scholarship $96,000, Pacific Lutheran University Q Club $39,592; Pacific Lutheran University

Miriel Cawyer — William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, Gardiner Salmon Derby Association $1,000, EWU Educational Grants $52,632;Eastern Washington University

Ryan Clark — William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, Gardiner Salmon Derby Association $1,000, Whitworth University Grant $96,000, Whitworth Alumni Scholarship $4,000, Whitworth Visit Scholarship $1,000; Whitworth University

Mathew Craig — Bremerton Valley Scottish Rite $1,000, Klahhane Hiking Club $250, Sequim Prairie Garden Club $500, SHS Honor Society Scholarship $500, Washington Council of Firefighters $750, Gardiner Garden Club $1,500, Puget Sound Anglers Association $2,000, Sequim Elks Lodge #2642 $1,500, Washington State Elks Association Scholarship $2,000; University of Washington

Kaitlyn Davis — McDonald Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Gardiner Garden Club $1,000, Soroptimist International of Sequim $2,000, PEO Foundation Chapter HM-WA $2,500, Washington State Opportunity STEM Scholarship $22,500, WWU Opportunity Pathways Scholarship $8,000, WWU Educational Grants $24,080, WA State College Bound Scholarship $29,516; Western Washington University

Adam DeFilippo — Rowland Memorial Scholarship $500, Marysville Sons of Italy $300, Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500, Clallam County Volunteer Firefighters Dale Kruse Memorial $1,000, International Footprint Association $1,500, Sequim Prairie Rhododendron Grange $1,000; Peninsula College

Amber Dietzman — Joann Haynes Scholarship $450, Christian Commitment Scholarship $450, Christian Service Scholarship $450, Faith Foundation Scholarship $450, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000; Edmonds Community College

Morgan Dippert — Sandra Bailey Memorial Scholarship $250, Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500, Sequim Prairie Rhododendron Grange $1,000, Gardiner Garden Club $500; Central Oregon Community College

Amanda Dodson — Ben Merscher Memorial Scholarship $500, SHS Honor Society Scholarship $500, Sequim Elks Lodge #2642 $1,500, Sunland Owners Association $4,000, Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $6,000, PLU Academic Scholarship $100,000, PLU Q Club Scholarship $23,272, PLU Grants $45,428; Pacific Lutheran University

Katrina Dolan — William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000; University of Washington-Tacoma

Nicholas Ellison — Rowland Memorial Scholarship $500, Charlotte Kirby Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Army ROTC Scholarship $184,000, Gonzaga University Scholarship $48,200; Gonzaga University

Jacob James Emery — US Marine Corps Education Benefits/GI Bill $180,000; U.S. Marine Corps

Chloeanne Erickson — Albert Haller Foundation $8,000, Bob Duncan Memorial Scholarship $500, Rick Kaps Memorial Scholarship $500, Ben & Myrtle Walkling Memorial Trust $1,000, PEO Chapters FY/HM/EP $2,250, Soroptimist International of Sequim$ 2,000, CWU Educational Grants $53,604; Central Washington University

Rene Flores — Clallam County Bar Association $750, Sequim Lavender Growers Association $1,000, Gardiner Salmon Derby Association $1,000, UW Seattle College Bound Scholarship $72,048; University of Washington

Levi Foy — Albert Haller Foundation $8,000, Ben & Myrtle Walkling Memorial Trust $1,000, Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500, Lyons Memorial Scholarship $500, Bob Duncan Memorial Scholarship $500; Peninsula College

Emma Gallaher — SEF Film Festival Scholarship $1,000; gap year

Natalie Garling — Gardiner Salmon Derby Association $1,000, WWU Tuition Waiver Award $10,000; Western Washington University

Tea Gauthun — Sequim School Board Student Rep Award $500; Washington State University

Payton Glasser — Sequim Elks Lodge #2642 $1,000, SEA Future Teacher Scholarship Northwest University $500, Charlotte Kirby Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Northwest University Basketball Scholarship $63,000, Northwest University Faculty Scholarship $40,000; Northwest University

Alisha Grasser — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $4,000, Sequim Pioneer Association $1,000, OSU Evergreen Scholarship $32,000; Oregon State University

Harrison Greer — Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500, Douglas Cronin Welding Scholarship $1,000, Sequim Chamber Howard Wood Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Sandra Bailey Memorial Scholarship $750, Sequim Association of Realtors $500; Clark College

Hayden Gresli — Bill Mair Heating & Air Scholarship $500; Peninsula College

Faith Haggie — SEF Sequim Options School Scholarship $1,000; Peninsula College

Andrew Hansted — Sequim Prairie Garden Club $1,500, Sequim Sunrise Rotary Williams STEM Scholarship $4,000, WSU Harold Willmsen Horticulture Scholarship $400, Gardiner Garden Club $500, Washington Federation of Garden Clubs $1,000, WSU Regents Scholarship $16,000; Washington State University

Garrett Harris — US Army Education Benefits/GI Bill $180,000; U.S. Army

William Harris — Charlotte Kirby Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Seattle University HonorsScholarship $7,200, Seattle University Campion Scholarship $88,000; Seattle University

Claire Henninger — Bremerton Valley Scottish Rite $1,000, Queen of Angels Catholic Church $1,000, Tony Juliano Memorial Scholarship $1,000, OMC Medical Auxiliary Scholarship $1,500, WWU Opportunity Pathway Scholarship $8,000; Western Washington University

Devin Hibler — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $4,000, Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500; University of Washington

Audrey Hughes — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $4,000, Bremerton Valley Scottish Rite $1,000, Puget Sound Anglers Association $1,000, SHS Honor Society Scholarship $500, BYU Heritage Scholarship $22,480; Brigham Young University

Jilian Hutchison Blouin — SEF Engineering Challenge Scholarship $500, Sequim Alumni Association $1,500, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, Sequim Sunrise Rotary Vocational Scholarship $5,000; Peninsula College

Nickolas Janikic — Super Cup Soccer Scholarship $750, Sequim Elks Lodge #2642 $1,000; Peninsula College

Mackenzie Jay — AAUW Clallam Branch $2,000; Peninsula College

Brittany Jensen — SEF James Halloran Memorial Scholarship $2,000, Mary Whitemore Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Tony Juliano Memorial Scholarship $1,000; Bellingham Technical College

Shelby Jones — Nurse-to-Nurse Scholarship $1,000; Peninsula College

Jessica Rose Lato — Tony Juliano Memorial Scholarship $1,000, CWU Tuition Scholarship $7,200, CWU Trustees’ Tuition Award $8,000; Central Washington University

Stephanie Lemus — Gardiner Salmon Derby Association $1,000; Concordia University

Sydnee Linnane — Mike Beery Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Sequim Association of Realtors $1,200, University of Washington Bothell $67,124; University of Washington Bothell

Ruth Lopez — SEF James Halloran Memorial Scholarship $2,000, SEA Future Teacher Scholarship $500, Helen Haller Elementary PTO Scholarship $500, Soroptimist Violet Richardson Award $250, WSU Logan RH & Jane Endowment Award $16,000, WSU Undergraduate Grants $62,292; Washington State University

Astrid Martin — Rowland Memorial Scholarship $500, Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500; University of Washington

Adare McMinn — Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500, Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $4,000, WSU Academic Achievement Award $4,000; Washington State University

Shane Meyer-Ellis — US Army Education Benefits/GI Bill $180,000; U.S. Army

Kevin Meyer — Wright Memorial Scholarship $500, Peninsula Tennis Club $500, Sequim Pioneer Association $1,000, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, Sequim Prairie Rhododendron Grange $1,500, Corban University Dean’s Scholarship $56,000, Corban University Alumni Scholarship $2,000, Corban University Visit Scholarship $2,000; Corban University

Ian Miller — Bill Mair Heating & Air Scholarship $500, Skills Pay! Scholarship $400, Yakima Valley Baseball Scholarship $300; Yakima Valley Community College

Alexis Moore — Ben Merscher Memorial Scholarship $500, Rowland Memorial Scholarship $500, Sequim Association of Realtors $500, WSU Visit Scholarship $1,000, Mary Whitemore Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Tony Juliano Memorial Scholarship $1,000, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000; Washington State University

Jacob Myers — US Army Education Benefits/GI Bill $180,000; U.S. Army

Benjamin Newell — Sequim Association of Realtors $500; Tacoma Community College

Teya Nop — Jane Q Miller & Gertrude Greenside Scholarship $8,000, PEO Foundation Chapter HM-WA $2,250, Sequim Sunrise Rotary Scholarship $2,500, Sequim Association of Realtors $1,000, Sequim Elks Lodge #2642 $1,000, UW Husky Promise College Bound Awards $72,048; University of Washington

Abby Norman — Jeff Caterina Memorial Scholarship $500, Shipley Senior Center $1,000, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, Soroptimist of Sequim/Colleen Blazier Medical $2,500, Sequim Irrigation Festival Royalty Scholarship $1,000, University of Portland Schulte Scholarship $44,000, University of Portland Grants $51,800; University of Portland

Alex Olson — US Army Education Benefits/GI Bill $180,000; U.S. Army

Kiera Phipps — Agnew Helpful Neighbors Club $3,000; Peninsula College

Kiara Pierson — Rowland Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Sequim Community Church $1,300, Sequim Lavender Growers Association $500, The Sequim Lavender Company $500, SHS Honor Society Scholarship $500, PEO Chapter JC $500, West Point Military Academy $400,000; West Point Military Academy

Timothy Porter — Peninsula Tennis Club $500, Peninsula Singers Dewey Ehling Memorial $500, Sequim City Band $500, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500; Western Washington University

Christopher Puksta — US Army Education Benefits/GI Bill $180,000; U.S. Army

John Purvis — Sequim School District Bus Drivers Scholarship $500, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, WSU Regents Scholarship $16,000; Washington State University

Jeffery Robotkay — US Army Education Benefits/GI Bill $180,000; U.S. Army

Jamie Schroepfer — Bill Mair Heating & Air Scholarship $500, Agnew Helpful Neighbors Club $3,000; Peninsula College

Sarah Shea — Sequim Sunrise Rotary Scholarship $2,500, Sequim Youth Basketball $500, WWU Golf Athletic Scholarship $12,600, WWU Academic Scholarship $8,000; Western Washington University

Isaac Smith — Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500; Peninsula College

Samantha Smith — Skagit Valley College Golf $2,000, Dungeness Valley Lutheran Church John Behren Scholarship $2,250; Skagit Valley College

Tyler Smith — Clallam County Volunteer Firefighters Dale Kruse Memorial $500, Sequim Prairie Rhododendron Grange $1,000, Bill Mair Heating & Air Scholarship $500, Peninsula College

Liam Stevenson — Baylor University Scholarship $68,000; Baylor University

Johnathan Stipe — Albert Haller Foundation $8,000, Sequim Masonic Lodge $1,500; Central Washington University

Madison Thomas — Sequim School District Bus Drivers Scholarship $500; Pima Community College-Arizona

Grace Tolberd — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $6,000, Sequim Sunrise Rotary Scholarship $2,500, SEF Woodward Ward Scholarship $2,000, Saint Joseph’s Catholic Church $2,000, SEA Future Teacher Scholarship $500, Sequim Junior Soccer Scholarship $750, Sequim Association of Realtors $1,200, Pacific University Preview Day Scholarship $1,000, Pacific University Oregon Grant $50,000, Pacific University Oregon Honors Scholarship $84,000; Pacific University

Teairra Tveit — Sequim Valley Car Club $1,000, Gardiner Garden Club $1,000, Tony Juliano Memorial Scholarship $1,000, Gardiner Salmon Derby Association $1,000; Bellingham Technical College

Gavin Velarde — William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, CWU Tuition Scholarship $7,200; Central Washington University

Dylan Washburn — Port Angeles Association of Realtors $500, Sequim Prairie Rhododendron Grange $1,000, Bill Mair Heating & Air Scholarship $500, Sequim Association of Realtors $500; Peninsula College

Jazz Weller — Virginia Nitterhouse Foundation $4,000, Sunland Owners Association $4,000, Bremerton Valley Scottish Rite $1,000, Sequim Elks Lodge #2642 $1,000, BYU Tuition Award $22,552; Brigham Young University

Sarah Whitney — Clallam County Bar Association $750, William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000; Eastern Washington University

Tomi Wilson — Peninsula Singers Denise Graham Memorial Scholarship $500; gap year

Elliot Witecki — Gardiner Garden Club $1,000; Central Washington University

Aubree Young — WWU Opportunity Pathway Scholarship $4,000, WWU Educational Grants $26,480; Western Washington University

Sara Zarit — William & Esther Littlejohn Foundation $6,000, UW Seattle College Bound Scholarship Grants $72,048; University of Washington

Grant total: $4,791,507

U.S. Army recruiting officer Cpt. Josh Woodke gives Sequim High graduate-to-be Nick Ellison an Army ROTC Scholarship worth $184,000. Ellison, who will attend Gonzaga University in the fall, received more than $230,000 in scholarships. Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

U.S. Army recruiting officer Cpt. Josh Woodke gives Sequim High graduate-to-be Nick Ellison an Army ROTC Scholarship worth $184,000. Ellison, who will attend Gonzaga University in the fall, received more than $230,000 in scholarships. Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

Mary Jane Duncan gives Bob Duncan Memorial Scholarships and hugs to SHS graduating seniors Chloe Ann Erickson and Levi Foy; from left, Sequim High School principal Shawn Langston and counselors Erin Fox and Melee Vandervelde look on. Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

Mary Jane Duncan gives Bob Duncan Memorial Scholarships and hugs to SHS graduating seniors Chloe Ann Erickson and Levi Foy; from left, Sequim High School principal Shawn Langston and counselors Erin Fox and Melee Vandervelde look on. Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

Shipley Center Executive Director Michael Smith, left, gives scholarships and trophies along with, as his tradition, some bubble wrap — “Don’t pop pills, pop bubble wrap” — to SHS graduating seniors Josiah Carter, Abby Norman and Andrea Albaugh. Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

Shipley Center Executive Director Michael Smith, left, gives scholarships and trophies along with, as his tradition, some bubble wrap — “Don’t pop pills, pop bubble wrap” — to SHS graduating seniors Josiah Carter, Abby Norman and Andrea Albaugh. Sequim Gazette photo by Michael Dashiell

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