The three valedictorians of the Lynden High School Class of 2020 know that relationships and opportunities for growth defined their four years at the high school.
For Cassidy Langley, Jordan Oliver and Kylie Silves, having the opportunity to learn at Lynden was special. “Attending Lynden High School has been a wonderful experience and one I will always cherish,” Silves says. “The encouraging teachers, great classmate friendships and high level of academics is what I will remember most.”
Langley says she will “remember the friends I made and all of the great activities I had an opportunity to be part of.”
With teachers that made the challenging learning experience fun by adding humor to the more difficult moments, Silves says, she felt that all her teachers, from kindergarten through high school, provided her with instruction and guidance to be successful in her future. Oliver noted how Joanna Scott, Kevin Richins and Scott Sahagian all “challenged and inspired me with their teaching styles and dedication to their subjects.” For Langley, the late Curt Kramme connected with her. “I was truly inspired by him,” she says. Langley will also remember JoAnn Roorda “fondly.”
Oliver says, “It is this joy during learning that sets Lynden High School apart developing a loving community that encourages students to grow to become positive role models to others.”
When it comes down to specific areas, opportunities both in school and outside of school make the list. Langley says that being part of the cheer team “brought me life-long friends and an awesome opportunity to represent our school.” Oliver appreciated art classes, especially ceramics with Sahagian, and her time with the LHS performing arts program. Silves became a cheer captain, which she says helped her grow in leadership and teamwork, giving her amazing memories with her coaches and teammates. “I loved being able to add to the spirit of Lynden by cheering along with the students of LHS as well as the community of Lynden,” she says. “Cheering and being part of ‘Friday Night Lights’ at Lynden will always be a wonderful memory that I will cherish.”
Along with the foundational academic skills, Silves says Lynden taught her the importance of community. “At Lynden High School there are so many activities and clubs where the sense of community is applied, whether it is pep assemblies, cheering on our Lions or in the classroom, there is always a sense of community,” she says. “Lynden as a whole is such a tight and connected community where helping others is a normal occurrence. Being a part of this community in Lynden High School has taught me the value of relationship that creates a healthy community.”
For Oliver, she gained some personal direction. “I learned to trust in myself and to follow my own goals and aspirations, not what other people thought I should do,” she says.
Langley knows that her time at Lynden High School helped her cement her own focus. “My time here in high school has reinforced in me the benefits of having a positive mental attitude,” she says.
Following graduation, Langley plans ot attend Western Washington University to major in math while pursuing a career in elementary education. Oliver also expects to attend Western, majoring in communications or visual journalism. Silves plans to attend Grand Canyon University on a dance scholarship, hoping to earn a Bachelor of Arts in dance education and then a master’s in elementary education.