Impacting senior citizens and human trafficking… yes, you read that correctly! Jun01

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Impacting senior citizens and human trafficking… yes, you read that correctly!

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The Midway High School Class of 2016 valedictorian and salutatorian are making more of a mark than an A+ in their academic careers. Matthew Parsons founded a group to entertain seniors in local nursing homes, and Amanda Lapes helped establish an awareness group for human trafficking (founded by fellow senior Annie Griesemer). Congratulations to these stellar students as we celebrate all of their accomplishments in just four years as Midway High School Panthers, both in the community and in the classroom.

Parsons_Matthew-MHSval16Midway Independent School District is pleased to present the valedictorian for the class of 2016, Matthew Quincy Parsons. Parsons has been ranked first in his class all eight semesters of his high school career. He is the son of Heidi Hornik-Parsons and Mikeal Parsons, and while a student at Midway High school he was founder and president of Midway’s Songs for Seniors (musicians who perform for local nursing homes), president of the French Club, and class representative of the Spanish Club. He is a member of the Mock Trial team that qualified for the state tournament three consecutive years. He is a member of the National Honor Society and was a UIL Academics Regional Qualifier in Literary Criticism and Science. He is principal clarinetist of the Baylor Youth Wind Ensemble and played in the Orchestra Pit for various Midway Musicals. Top achievements for Parsons include being a National Merit Commended Scholar and an AP Scholar with Distinction. He was named the Midway Star Student in the Wacoan magazine and Most Outstanding Midway High School Student by the Greater Hewitt Chamber of Commerce. He received a Gold Medal in the National French Exam Level 3, which placed him among the top five scorers in the nation. He also received a Gold Medal in the National Spanish Exam Level II, which placed him in the top 98th percentile of national test-takers.  Parsons was an All-Region and All-Area Clarinetist, and the Outstanding Soloist in Clarinet at the Dallas Meyerson Invitational. He was also a TMEA all-state soloist.  Parsons was one of thirteen musicians invited to participate in the Clarinet Workshop at the Tanglewood Music Institute in Massachusetts. After graduation, Parsons plans to attend Harvard University where he will major in Biology and continue his studies in linguistics and music.

Lapes_Amanda-MHSsal16Midway High School salutatorian for the class of 2016 is Amanda Grace Lapes. Lapes is the daughter of Anthony and Shari Lapes of Waco. Lapes played basketball and ran cross country while maintaining academic excellence. She was named Academic All-State in cross country by the Texas High School Coaches Association and the Cross Country Coaches Association of Texas. Lapes is an AP Scholar with Honors. She is a member of National Honor Society, Spanish Club, and Spanish National Honor Society. She is the founding treasurer of Midway High School’s Unbound Club for raising awareness of human/sex trafficking. Her volunteer activities include serving as a kids’ volunteer at Antioch Community Church as well as a student leader in Antioch’s high school ministry. She received the Spirit of Midway Award for volunteerism from MHS. Lapes also received Panther Pride teacher recognition awards all four years of high school. Upon graduation, she plans to attend Baylor University and major in Nutrition Sciences.