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Making good grades, getting to basketball regionals, and promoting leadership. Those are a few of the goals that Empire High School’s Class of 2013 have on their lists as they returned to class Monday.
It was the first day of their final year and many seemed excited about what the year holds for them.
Tanner Shorter, who is team captain of the football team and an FFA officer, has aspirations for making it the best year.
“There’s a lot of young people coming up this year, so I’m wanting to show good leadership and pass on that vibe,” he said.
Fellow senior classmate and FFA officer Jesse Riedel, shared feelings about the year and their roles now as leaders.
Riedel hopes to get his siblings involved with the FFA program.
“I want to get my little brothers into FFA,” said Riedel. “It’s bittersweet (heading into the final year).”
Classmate and athlete Marissa Curtis also indicated she is taking on the role of being a leader, knowing that many of the youth will be looking to them for that leadership.
“I want to make regionals in basketball,” said Curtis, who has played for the Lady Bulldogs for the past three years. “In the past years, (the girls) have gotten down on themselves and I want to help lift them up this year.”
Even though they all have set leadership goals for themselves, they also want to have fun their final year.
“Everyone says that your senior year is the fun year,” said Shorter. “I’m excited and just want to get through it and make some decent grades.”
Empire High School Principal Jodie Roberts said she sees this year to be “awesome” based on what she saw Monday as students returned to the school campus.
While there were many factors including the nice weather, the students were a large part of what made the day the smoothest first day of school Roberts has had since she took her current position.
“We have some great kids, we always do and I love them,” said Roberts. “You get invested in them and I’m looking forward to see how they grow and mature.”
As for the Empire class of 2013, they are anticipating a good year and are looking toward the finish line of their secondary educational years. While some are aiming for college, others the work force and some the military, they all want to make good senior year memories.
“A lot of the juniors are my friends,” said Shorter. “ I have my ag teacher, Mr. (Billy) Cheatwood, twice this year. He’s my hero.”
First day enrollment numbers were not available yet for Empire.