The Otsego class of 2016’s top 21 students include (back, from left) Shawn Farrell, Jesse David, Ryan Piersma, Kevin Miltenberger, Rachel Perry, Shelby Boers, Chase Drobny, (middle) Rebekah Bower, Elsy Nouna, Katherine Voisard, Emily Nuyen, Schyler Bennett, Morgan Zuydwegt, Ashlie McEwen, (front) Meagan Tobias, Ashley Lane, Lauryn Coffey, Elyse Pfeiffer, Emily White, Delaney Bush and Madison Secord. (Photo provided) 

Otsego picks Top 21 graduates

Otsego High School has announced its top graduates for the class of 2016.

Schyler Bennett is the daughter of Martins and Jacqueline Bennett of Plainwell. She plans to attend the University of Michigan to study microbiology.

“I took AP Biology my junior year and found cells and bacteria to be infinitely fascinating and I realized that I wanted to study them,” she said.

Bennett received the University of Michigan Regents Scholarship and the Otsego Public Schools foundation scholarship and received the AP Scholar Award and AP Scholar with Distinction Award. She was a part of student council, National Honor Society, the robotics team, book club and marching, symphonic and pep bands.

Shelby Boers is the daughter of Diane and Peter Boers of Otsego.

She plans to attend the University of Michigan to study neuroscience on a pre-med track.

“My Grandma Rose inspired me to choose the medical field. She had Huntington’s Disease, a genetic disorder affecting the nervous system, and died from it almost six years ago.

“Her struggle with the disease made me realize how much I wanted to help people and how much I wanted a cure for HD,” she said.

Shelby received the Otsego Public Schools Foundation Scholarship. She was involved in 4-H and volunteered at Borgess Medical Center and the Huntington’s Disease Society of America.

Rebekah Bower is the daughter of Daniel and Shannon Bower of Plainwell.

She plans to attend Grand Valley State University to study nursing.

“Mrs. (Kristin) Alkire taught me so much and inspired me to work hard and actually enjoy science,” Bower said.

She received the Lake Scholarship and was involved with sideline and competitive cheer and National Honor Society.

Delaney Bush is the daughter of Jonathan and Erin Bush of Plainwell.

She plans to attend Central Michigan University as a part of the CMU Honors College and study biology.

“Mrs. (Kristin) Alkire inspired my love for biology. I fell in love with biology during the freshman level class and didn’t find a (bigger) favorite class until AP biology,” Bush said.

Bush received the Centralis Gold Scholarship from CMU and was the Otsego Daughters of the American Revolution Good Citizen award recipient. She participated in cross country, yearbook, musicals, choir, National Honor Society and was a freshman mentor, middle school assistant track coach, elementary cooking class assistant, guidance office assistant and an active member of the St. Margaret Catholic Church youth group where she was involved in mission work.

Lauryn Coffey is the daughter of Danielle Kubasiak of Three Rivers and Glenn Coffey of Allegan.

She plans to attend Western Michigan University to major in psychology and minor in sociology.

“In the summer, I am a full-time nanny for my cousins, one of whom has a mild case of autism. Watching him grow, learn and develop habits throughout the last four years inspired me to desire a position as an educational psychologist,” Coffey said.

She received the Dean’s scholarship from WMU along with the Bronco Recognition scholarship. She participated in the National Honor Society and girls varsity tennis.

Jesse David is the son of Paul and Amy David of Otsego.

He plans to attend Grand Valley State University to study computer engineering.

“My love for technology encouraged me to pursue this field of study,” David said.

He received the GVSU Award of Excellence, the Otsego Public Schools Foundation scholarship, a Michigan Interscholastic Swim Coaches Associatio scholarship and was named Academic All-American and Academic All-State for swimming. He participated in student council, National Honor Society, swimming, soccer, track and field, football Pro Youth Team, musicals and choir.

Chase Drobny is the son of Matt and Kelli Drobny of Kalamazoo.

He plans to attend Michigan State University and follow in his family’s footsteps farming. Drobny plans to major in Business and Agriculture.

“Growing up on a farm my whole life, I have wanted to be farmer for as long as I can remember,” Drobny said.

He received an Otsego Public Schools Foundation scholarship and Future Farmers of America scholarship. He has been involved with National Honor Society and the varsity golf team. 

Shawn Farrell is the son of Thomas and Linda Farrell of Kalamazoo.

Farrell plans to attend the University of Michigan Dearborn to major in International Studies.

“I love to travel and learn about other cultures,” he said.

Farrell received the Hail Scholarship and participated in National Honor Society and the soccer, golf and diving teams.

Ashley Lane is the daughter of Rex and Eileen Lane of Otsego.

She plans to attend Georgetown University to major in International Relations.

“I have always loved social studies and learning about other languages and cultures,” Lane said.

She received the Otsego Public Schools Foundation scholarship, Power of One scholarship, was a Commended National Merit Scholar, scholar athlete, a Joyce Ivy Foundation summer scholar and on the honor roll.

She is a state champion in forensics for the 2016 Class BCD in oratory competition. Lane participated in band, color guard, ACE winter guard, dance, debate team, forensics, founded Girls Leading Our World, tennis and National Honor Society.

Ashlie McEwen is the daughter of Matt and Angila McEwen of Kalamazoo.

McEwen plans to attend Grand Valley State University to study nursing with a minor in Spanish.

“I have always had a passion for helping children and my mom is a nurse so that’s what really helped me choose my field,” she said.

McEwen received the Competitive Cheer Coaches Association scholarship and a GVSU scholarship. She will also be on the GVSU cheer team.

She participated in sideline and competitive cheer, soccer and track and was in the National Honor Society.

Kevin Miltenberger is the son of Lynne and Matthew Miltenberger of Kalamazoo.

He plans to attend either Northern Michigan University or Michigan Technological University to study biochemistry and pre-veterinary medicine.

“I’ve always loved animals and science. Taking AP Biology and AP Chemistry furthered my interest in science and volunteering at the SPCA of Southwest Michigan and at my veterinarian inspired me to be a veterinarian,” Miltenberger said.

He received the NMU Harden scholarship (full ride), Army ROTC 4-year national scholarship and the Elks Michigan Most Valuable Student scholarship.

Miltenberger participated in varsity soccer, quiz bowl, National Honor Society, student council and travel soccer with Kalamazoo kingdom.

Elsy Nouna is the daughter of Riyad Nouna and Colette Raweh of Otsego.

She will attend the University of Michigan studying pre-med and biology.

“I have always been passionate about science and amazed how the human body works in cohesion. I also have a passion for helping others which made me want to pursue higher education in medicine,” Nouna said.

She received the Hail Scholarship from U of M and the Otsego Public Schools Foundation scholarship. She was involved in basketball, soccer, varsity quiz bowl, National Honor Society, musicals and was a tutor.

Emily Nuyen is the daughter of Eric Nuyen of Portage and Sandy Nunley of Portage.

She plans to attend Kalamazoo Valley Community College and then Michigan State University to study business. She may also play softball at KVCC.

Nuyen received the KVCC Merit Scholarship.

She was on the yearbook staff and played softball and volleyball at Otsego and softball for the Portage Hurricanes.

Rachel Perry is the daughter of Karri and Ed Perry of Gobles.

She plans to attend Concordia University in Ann Arbor to major in Pre-Dental. Perry will also be on the track and basketball teams.

She said she chose dentistry because she wants to spend her life helping people.

Perry was a part of basketball, track and field, school store, yearbook and National Honor Society. She received the Regents scholarship and an athletic scholarship from Corcordia.

Elyse Pfeiffer is the daughter of Pete and Cindy Pfeiffer of Otsego.

Pfeiffer plans to attend Michigan State University to study nursing. She will be in the Honors College and the Nurse Scholar Program.

“My brother’s battle with cancer was one of the many experiences that inspired me to be a nurse where I could help those in need every day,” Pfeiffer said.

She received the Lewis Kaminga Alumni Scholarship from MSU and an Otsego Public Schools Foundation scholarship. She has been the co-editor in chief of the yearbook, an assistant coach for Girls on the Run, an English tutor, a freshman mentor and was involved with National Honor Society, the volleyball team and went on five mission trips with her church youth group.

Ryan Piersma is the son of Mitch and Pam Piersma of Otsego.

He plans to attend Duke University to major in electrical engineering.

“I’ve always loved electronics so once I learned to appreciate and enjoy mathematics and heard about electrical engineering, I knew it was for me.

“Working with Dr. Damon Miller at WMU helped confirm that I wanted to pursue the field,” he said.

Piersma was a National Merit Scholarship Finalist, AP Scholar with Distinction, All-State Trombonist, Academic All-State Athlete and Scholar Athlete. He received the Michigan Elks Association Scholarship, Bob Wright Memorial Scholarship and Otsego Public Schools Foundation STEM Scholarship. He was on the varsity tennis team, quiz bowl team and in marching, symphonic and pep bands and in National Honor Society. He was also a part of the Kalamazoo Junior Symphony Orchestra and Northbridge Community Church Worship Team.

Madison Secord is the daughter of Tim and Tera Secord of Otsego.

She plans to attend Cornerstone University, where her major is currently undecided and she will play soccer and run track.

Secord received the Pastor’s scholarship, an athletic scholarship and the Presidential scholarship from Cornerstone. She also received an Otsego Public Schools Foundation scholarship.

She has been involved in volleyball, cross country, basketball, soccer, student council, National Honor Society, Pro Youth Team, Rotary Youth Leadership camp, Make-a-Wish, musicals, choir, band, color guard and was a freshman mentor.

Meagan Tobias is the daughter of Carmen and Sandra Tobias from Otsego.

She plans to attend the University of Michigan’s College of Engineering.

Her inspiration for engineering came from summer engineering camps, science and math classes and participating in FIRST Robotics and other STEM programs in school.

Tobias was on the honor roll all four years, was a Regional Finalist for Michigan History Day in 2014, was named to the Wolverine Conference Academic All-Conference Team and received the Regents of Michigan Scholarship, Perrigo Scholarship and the OPS Foundation STEM Scholarship.

Katherine Voisard is the daughter of Doug and Julie Voisard of Otsego.

She plans to attend Michigan State University to study kinesiology.

“My inspiration to pursue physical therapy is my eighth grade teacher Mrs. Starr and I love sports and want to work in an active environment,” Voisard said.

She was a scholar athlete, on the honor roll all four years and received the Otsego Public Schools Foundation scholarship. She also earned 10 varsity letters participating in volleyball, basketball and soccer. Voisard was also involved in National Honor Society, yearbook and was a freshman mentor.

Emily White is the daughter of Anne and Tim White of Otsego.

She plans to attend the University of Michigan to major in International Studies and French.

“I fell in love with French in Mrs. Trahan’s class and international studies will help me help other people,” White said.

She received the Hail Scholarship from U of M. In high school, she served as the co-editor in chief of the yearbook.

Morgan Zuydwegt is the daughter of Jerry and Nathan Bowe of Otsego.

She plans to attend Western Michigan University in the Lee Honors College, majoring in both business management and Spanish.

Working with the owner of All That Athletics inspired her field of study.

She received the WMU Pillar scholarship, Bronco Recognition scholarship, Haworth College of Business Rising Star scholarship and the Otsego Public Schools Foundation scholarship.

 Zuydwegt was on the gymnastics team at All That Athletics and in Spanish and French Club. She will be traveling to Spain and France this summer.

 

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