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Valedictorian Feels Success, Receives First Year Tuition Waiver From UT Austin

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Ending the year with a 5.75 GPA, senior Grant Lee is the 2019 valedictorian of his senior class. He was given the news just a few weeks ago, along with other students who are top in the class. “Being told I am officially the valedictorian was easily one of the best feelings ever,” Lee said. “Four painful years of studying and working hard ultimately paid off in the end.”

Ending the year with a 5.75 GPA, senior Grant Lee is the 2019 valedictorian of his senior class. He was given the news just a few weeks ago, along with other students who are top in the class. “Being told I am officially the valedictorian was easily one of the best feelings ever,” Lee said. “Four painful years of studying and working hard ultimately paid off in the end.”

Photo courtesy of Grant Lee

Ending the year with a 5.75 GPA, senior Grant Lee is the 2019 valedictorian of his senior class. He was given the news just a few weeks ago, along with other students who are top in the class. “Being told I am officially the valedictorian was easily one of the best feelings ever,” Lee said. “Four painful years of studying and working hard ultimately paid off in the end.”

Photo courtesy of Grant Lee

Photo courtesy of Grant Lee

Ending the year with a 5.75 GPA, senior Grant Lee is the 2019 valedictorian of his senior class. He was given the news just a few weeks ago, along with other students who are top in the class. “Being told I am officially the valedictorian was easily one of the best feelings ever,” Lee said. “Four painful years of studying and working hard ultimately paid off in the end.”

Mckenzie Hayek, Reporter

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On May 31, nearly 500 seniors will walk across the stage and be recognized for obtaining a high school degree. On this day, senior Grant Lee will stand in front of his classmates, friends and family to be acknowledged for his whopping 5.75 GPA, making him the valedictorian of this year’s graduating class.

Lee’s rank started out at number two during freshman year and it wasn’t until the end of the first semester of his junior year when he claimed his spot as number one in the senior class of 473 students. Lee was recently informed that his rank is secure and that he is the valedictorian of the class of 2019.

“Being told I am officially the valedictorian was easily one of the best feelings ever,” Lee said. “Four painful years of studying and working hard ultimately paid off in the end.”

Being told I am officially the valedictorian was easily one of the best feelings ever. Four painful years of studying and working hard ultimately paid off in the end.”

— Grant Lee (12)

Lee said he pushed himself throughout high school by taking 12 AP classes: Human Geography, World History, English III, Chemistry, US History, Spanish IV and V, Macroeconomics, Government, Environmental Science, Biology and Calculus.

“Calculus was probably the most interesting AP class to me simply because it’s math, which is my favorite subject,” Lee said. “AP Chemistry was pretty hard, but my weakest subject is definitely history, so I would have to say that AP World History was the most challenging for me.”

Although his course load kept him busy, Lee managed to be involved in National Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, National Spanish Honor Society, the Asian Heritage Club, Timberwolves for the Environment and DECA.

“One of my favorites is definitely Asian Heritage Club, not only because I am a co-president, but also because I helped found the club,” Lee said. “At our meetings we play games and do fun activities that relate to Asian culture, gaining a loyal fan base in the process. I also love DECA because I was able to go to Disney World and Universal Studios in Orlando for winning State.”

Lee said how he remained focused while juggling all these tasks and responsibilities, explaining that his motivation to succeed was driven by a financial motive.

“As shallow as it may seem, money has kept me focused throughout high school,” Lee said. “In freshman and sophomore year, I tried my best and just happened to be highly ranked, but in my junior and senior year, I was most motivated by the first year tuition waiver granted to the highest ranking graduate of Texas public high schools. Without that financial incentive, I very well might have burnt out a long time ago.”

Next fall, Lee is attending the University of Texas at Austin, which is granting him several academic scholarships on top of the first year tuition waiver he earned for being valedictorian. Lee said he plans on majoring in environmental engineering because he loves math and the environment.

I’m most excited about meeting new like-minded people with similar interests as me,” Lee said. “I usually don’t like getting out of my comfort zone, but being on my own in a college environment next year will force me to get out and socialize with more people.