Dobyns-Bennett 2014 Graduates Excel


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We excel…

Saturday, May 24, 2014 dawned bright, sunny, and unseasonably cool in Kingsport, as 427 Dobyns-Bennett graduating seniors awoke to a day of excitement and celebration.  Graduation day at D-B is always a joyous occasion, as graduates and families gather to recognize student achievement and success.  This year’s event was no different, as another fantastic D-B class brought a successful close to their high school careers.

After a review of the data, to say this was a “successful” graduating class actually turns out to be quite an understatement.  In preparation for his commencement address, D-B Principal Dr. Chris Hampton did some research regarding the accomplishments of this particular class.  The results are nothing short of astounding.  The Class of 2014 contained:

  • Three National Merit Finalists
  • Two National Merit Commended Students
  • A Presidential Scholar Semifinalist
  • 85 Tennessee/Virginia Scholars
  • 93 Graduates of Distinction
  • An appointment to the United States Air Force Academy
  • Multiple commitments to the United States Armed Services
  • Four students with perfect attendance for all four years of high school
  • Over a dozen Career and Technical state-level winners and national qualifiers
  • Over 50 conference, district, and regional athletic titles
  • Multiple state athletic champions
  • A student with a perfect score on the ACT

But it doesn’t stop there.  This year’s graduating band class has been described as one of the most successful in the history of Dobyns-Bennett, having performed on some of the biggest stages in the country.  Their credits include performances for both the Governor and President, having marched at Neyland Stadium, in the Tournament of Roses and Macy’s parades, and at the Presidential Inauguration.

The quality of this year’s graduates has certainly been noticed, both near and far.  As an indicator of their success and future potential, the Class of 2014 has been offered the staggering amount of over $10.2 million in scholarship money to date.  This is the largest recorded amount of scholarship offerings for a graduating class since this data has been collected and speaks volumes about their achievement and potential for the future.

It is a class to be celebrated.  We look forward to seeing what great things lie in these students’ futures and trust that the experiences gained at D-B have prepared them well for the path in front of them.  The Class of 2014 epitomizes the definition of the phrase “World Class,” and with excitement and confidence, wish them well.  Once an Indian… Always an Indian!  #RollTribeRoll

We excel… We are KCS!

Cora Cox Academy Graduates Largest Class

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We persevere,

How do you define success?  It may be different for each of us, but for most folks, we likely think about crossing a finish line after embarking on some type of life journey.  At this time of year, graduation ceremonies provide the opportunity to celebrate the academic accomplishments of students who have reached a successful conclusion to their school experience.  It is one way we acknowledge the hard work and effort required to earn a diploma.

For many, that journey may be a direct path.  But for some, the road to that graduation finish line might look a bit different.  For a variety of reasons, life may cause it to be a winding road rather than a straight line.  That is what makes the 2014 graduating class of Cora Cox Academy so unique and so extraordinary.  Undaunted by whatever challenges life my have thrown at them, these young men and women demonstrated the commitment necessary to graduate high school and successfully prepare themselves for the next stage of their lives.  They are to be greatly commended for understanding the importance of completing high school and for committing themselves to accomplishing that goal.

On May 21, 2014, the largest graduating class in Cora Cox Academy history crossed the stage and received their diploma, signifying the completion of their high school journey.  It marked the next step in the growth and evolution of CCA, which offers students a unique path to a high school diploma.  In the coming months, this innovative approach to a personalized high school education will grow to include both a virtual academy with expanded online course offerings and a non-traditional high school academy, where flexible spaces and scheduling will help to serve a student population with diverse needs and abilities.    It’s an exciting and cutting-edge approach that focuses on individual student needs to provide all children a path to high school graduation… especially ones that may find success in the traditional high school setting more challenging.

As the recent Cora Cox Academy graduates demonstrated, great things can be accomplished when you dedicate yourself to doing whatever is necessary to reach that finish line.  And with the non-traditional approach being developed at CCA, even more students will have the opportunity to take this vital step in their life journey.  To the CCA Class of 2014, we salute you for not allowing the winding and difficult road of life from deterring you from reaching your goal of a high school diploma.  You set a wonderful example for us all, and we look forward to celebrating that next finish line with you.

We persevere… We are KCS!

Dobyns-Bennett High School Dramahawks


We are exceptional…

When the long and successful history of Dobyns-Bennett academic and extra-curricular programs are considered, you’d better make sure to place the D-B Theatre Department very close to the top of the list. With a litany of local, regional, and state honors achieved, Director Debbie Coram continues to develop the “Dramahawks” into some of the finest actors and actresses in the state. The bar continues to remain high, and our students (not surprisingly), continue to surpass those high expectations.

Earlier this month, D-B students again struck it big at the state drama tournament in Nashville, winning top honors in a variety of categories. The cast of “Teen Drama Takes a Hike” won the state Interpreters’ Theatre title (Daniel Jernigan, Lukas McCrary, Hunter Eaton, Jackson Fox, Zoe Stout, Merritt Cagle, Haleigh Hankins, Lauren Feathers, and Anna Mader), while Aaron Johnson and Ben Blevins took the title for Duet Acting. Other top results were turned in by Kelli Frawley (3rd place, Costume Design), Grayson Marshall (3rd place, Prose Interpretation), Devin Hooven (4th place, Pantomime), McKenzie Miller (4th place, Humorous Interpretation), Astrid Rotenberry (4th place, Solo Acting), Anna Mader (4th place, Storytelling) and Maxine Poole and Zach Shafer (5th place, Duet Acting).

One of the key foundational philosophies at D-B is that students are given a wide variety of opportunities and experiences (both inside and outside the classroom) in which to find excellence. How exciting to see that mindset embraced by a faculty that works hard to provide such varied experiences, and by a student body that excitedly steps forward to discover and cultivate the talents that lie within. The 2014 Dramahawks are a prime example of this philosophy. They should be applauded for their commitment to excellence and for displaying their talents both figuratively and literally on the local and statewide stage.

We are exceptional… We are KCS.