By John McLoone
The Hastings High School senior class has been a special one. Their achievements in academics, school activities and athletics will be talked about for years and decades to come.
This year’s class set one very notable record. At the Senior Awards Presentation held May 24, 111 scholarships totaling $195,000 were awarded to members of the Hastings High School Class of 2022.
The Hastings High School band kicked off the ceremony with several pieces performed to perfection, and the students received the first of several rousing ovations from the crowd assembled in the auditorium.
High School Principal Scott Doran asked band director Jim Jacobsen to take a bow, and the crowd again showed its support of the show.
Doran is the new Hastings High School Principal, and he shared the stage with his predecessor for the night, as Mike Johnson returned to announce scholarships. Johnson retired in February, and Doran was appointed interim principal. The interim tag will be removed, however, as Doran was selected this spring as the permanent high school principal.
“It is such a pleasure to be able to come together and recognize and celebrate these students. Tonight is a true validation of what we stand for at Hastings High School,” said Doran. “We are very proud of our academic offerings, the diversity of our course offerings. Our students are so involved in the fine arts, activities and athletics. Being the new guy, I have learned very quickly about how supportive this community is for all things public education. The support is what makes the Hastings community so special.”
He credited the dedicated school staff for their help in shaping the Class of 2022 into leaders.
“Speaking of a major factor of why we’re all here tonight, one reason why this group of students has been able to fund such success if our caring and dedicated staff, from food service workers to our custodians, teachers, health care workers, clerical staff paraprofessionals, technical support, and administration. Each employee group has a common vision, and that is to see our students succeed and somewhat sadly to let them move on to pursue their dreams,” said Doran.
Doran pointed out the incredible group of scholarship donors in the Hastings community, individuals, groups and businesses that step up each year and help make higher education a little easier on Hastings High grads and families.
“They give for many reasons, some of those reasons are because they were a recipient of a scholarship in their past and were now able to continue that legacy of giving,” said Doran.
As Doran asked donors to rise for an ovation, he had but one word to describe the community outpouring of support, “Unbelievable.”
He then asked the students to give an ovation to one other important group.
“Lastly, to the parents, you’ve done a terrific job raising your children. You should be very, very proud,” Doran said. “Students, as your parents rise, you know what to do. We owe them a debt of gratitude.”
Johnson got on with the program, and for over an hour, presenters and students took their place in the spotlight.
“It’s great to see everybody. Students, I’ve missed you. It’s an honor to come back,” said Johnson.
Photos courtesy ofHastings SchoolDistrict.