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GCPS Class of 2021: Gwinnett seniors prepare for graduation

May 19, 2021

     After 13 years of hard work during their K-12 academic careers, including two unexpected and uniquely challenging years caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 13,100 potential Gwinnett graduates are counting down the days. This year’s high school seniors will walk across the stage as the school district’s largest class to date.

     “As we enter the graduation season, we salute the Class of 2021,” says CEO/Superintendent J. Alvin Wilbanks. “This class has shown resilience in the face of adversity… completing their junior and senior years during a worldwide pandemic. Some of this year’s senior class completed their high school career digitally while others attended school in-person. No matter where they learned… they made lasting contributions to our schools and earned prestigious awards and scholarships, state championships, and more. In our schools, we strive to teach our students to be good citizens and this year’s graduates have proven themselves to be civic-minded individuals who care about what goes on in our world. They have contributed to our community’s quality of life in many ways through their civic involvement and service.

     On behalf of Gwinnett County Public Schools, I applaud this year’s graduates for their accomplishments and extend my deep appreciation to the families who supported and encouraged them during their academic career. I also salute the thousands of educators— from kindergarten to 12th grade— who gave their all to these students. Working together, families and educators have helped prepare these graduates for their futures, helping to develop them as well-rounded individuals—academically, socially, and emotionally.”

The senior report for the Class of 2021 shows that:

  • Nearly 77% of the students graduating this year report that they plan to continue their education by attending college or postsecondary schools. The vast majority of those graduates continuing their education, or 85%, plan to attend college in Georgia.
  • These seniors have been offered, as of April 2021, more than $161.8 million in academic, athletic, and military scholarships.
  • The majority of the scholarship amount, more than $97.5 million, was earned for academic achievement. Gwinnett students also received more than $61.5 million in athletic scholarships, and nearly $2.8 million due to military appointments. These monetary awards do not include HOPE, or full-tuition scholarships associated with the Posse, QuestBridge, or Gates scholarship programs.
  • As of May of 2021, 31 Gwinnett seniors earned a full scholarship through the QuestBridge College Match Scholarship Program. These students represent fifteen Gwinnett schools, with Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology having the most with five.
  • Three of the nation’s 300 Gates Scholarship recipients for 2021 are Gwinnett students. Berkmar High School, Peachtree Ridge High School and Shiloh High School each produced one Gates Scholar. This prestigious scholarship program provides an all-expenses-paid scholarship to high-potential, low-income minority students. It also provides support to Scholars by engaging with them and their institutions in ways to ensure they have access to the resources and services they need.
  • Seven Gwinnett graduating seniors earned full rides as Posse Scholars. Founded in 1989, the Posse Foundation identifies public high school students with extraordinary academic and leadership potential who may be overlooked by traditional college selection processes. Posse extends to these students the opportunity to pursue personal and academic excellence by placing them in supportive, multicultural teams— Posses— of 10 students. Partner colleges and universities award four-year, full-tuition leadership scholarships to Posse Scholars.
  • Seven Gwinnett students received military appointments.

School

Student

School/Branch

Archer HS

Kitana Burgard

United States Air Force Academy

Archer HS

Zion Jackson

United States Military Academy at West Point (Army)

Discovery HS

Andrew Miller-Craig

United States Military Academy at West Point (Army)

Grayson HS

Marbu Neal

United States Air Force Academy

Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology

Matthew Purvis

United States Naval Academy

Mill Creek HS

Hunter Dunnington

United States Military Academy at West Point (Army)

Peachtree Ridge HS

Bridget Hoang

United States Naval Academy

 

  • Mill Creek High graduates the largest class this year with 852 students, closely followed by Brookwood High with 837, and North Gwinnett High with 810.
  • The Class of 2021 also includes 4,022 Honor Graduates, who are graduating with a grade percent average of 90 or better.
  • During high school, 6,757 seniors took Advanced Placement (AP) courses.
  • While members of the Class of 2021 were working on their high school diploma, 1,757 of them also earned college credit through dual enrollment.

 

Gwinnett County Public Schools also salutes the highest-ranked students in each school based on their GPA, those earning the title of valedictorian or salutatorian. They are:

School

Valedictorian

(1st in Class)

Salutatorian

(2nd in Class)

Archer

Colin Cooper Clickner

Ethan Alexander Bowen

Berkmar HS

Jennifer Tran

Vicky Tong

Brookwood HS

Faizaan Baig

Andrea An

Central Gwinnett HS

Lois Ibukunoluwa Omorara

Nayzet Pena

Collins Hill HS

Kim Nguyen

Kaylie Chin

Dacula HS

Caitlyn Coker

Rayna Dyke

Discovery HS

Saeeda Osei Frimpong

Chanh Nguyen

Duluth HS

Srikar Narayan

Sahil Punwani

Grayson HS

Christopher Rhine

Zion Brannon

Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology (GSMST)

Donghao Jiang

Avyesh Kapadia

GOC

David Gallagher

Ethan Thomas Caldwell

Lanier HS

Jeremhy Cesar

Veronica Roberson

McClure HS

Jocelyn Miranda

Risala Gafurova

Meadowcreek HS

Sharfa Khan

Linh-Tu Bui

Mill Creek HS

Lauren Gomez

Phillip Kim

Mountain View HS

Katie Shin

Sydney Scott

Norcross HS

Eric Van Ness

Joshua Mao

North Gwinnett HS

Sarah Park

Caren Kim

Parkview HS

Lawrence Zhou

Velda Wang

Paul Duke STEM HS

Aaron Pinder

Lauren Antonowich

Peachtree Ridge HS

Isaac Hwang

Nikita Dandekar

Shiloh HS

Kennedy Odiboh

Anya Bibbs

South Gwinnett HS

Leah Yadessa

Olivia Bowers

Photos of valedictorians and salutatorians are available upon request and can be viewed on the GCPS website.

 

 The graduation ceremonies for Gwinnett’s Class of 2021 will take place as follows:

Monday, May 24, 2021

Phoenix High

Location

Phoenix High

Time

10 a.m.

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Gwinnett Online Campus

 

Gwinnett Online Campus

 

7 p.m.

Duluth High

Infinite Energy Arena

3 p.m.

Paul Duke STEM High

Infinite Energy Arena Halls A/B

5 p.m.

Central Gwinnett High

Central Gwinnett Stadium

7 p.m.

Brookwood High

Brookwood Stadium

8 p.m.

Discovery High

Infinite Energy Arena

8 p.m.

Mill Creek High

Mill Creek Community Stadium

8 p.m.

Parkview High

Parkview Community Stadium

8 p.m.

Thursday, May 27, 2021

Dacula High

 

Infinite Energy Arena

 

8:30 a.m.

Archer High

Infinite Energy Arena

2 p.m.

Shiloh High

Infinite Energy Arena

7:30 p.m.

Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology

Infinite Energy Exhibit Halls A/B

6 p.m.

Friday, May 28, 2021

Mountain View High

 

Infinite Energy Arena

 

8:30 a.m.

McClure Health Science High

Infinite Energy Exhibit Halls A/B

10 a.m.

Berkmar High

Infinite Energy Arena

2 p.m.

Norcross High

Infinite Energy Arena

7:30 p.m.

Saturday, May 29, 2021

Meadowcreek High

 

Infinite Energy Arena

 

8:30 a.m.

Grayson High

Infinite Energy Arena

2 p.m.

South Gwinnett High

Infinite Energy Arena

7:30 p.m.

Sunday, May 30, 2021 North Gwinnett High

 

Infinite Energy Arena

 

2 p.m.

Peachtree Ridge High

Infinite Energy Arena

7 p.m.

Monday, May 31, 2021

Collins Hill High

 

Infinite Energy Arena

 

8:30 a.m.

Lanier High

Infinite Energy Arena

2 p.m.