ATTICA TWP. — As is tradition, instructors at the Lapeer County Education and Technology Center have named the Top Senior in each of their career and technology programs.
What follows are those 2021 graduates who’ve excelled in their field of study.
Many thanks to Tonya Streasick, student services secretary at the school, for supplying this feature.
Lauren Weeder is from Dryden High School and the daughter of Kathy and Randy Weeder. She has been honored with the distinction for being the Top Senior in the Agriscience/Horticulture program.
While attending the Lapeer County Ed Tech, Lauren received awards and certifications through Ed Tech including the Elanco Fundamentals of Animal Science Certification, the Greenhand Degree Award and Outstanding Junior FFA Agricultural Award. Lauren received the State FFA Broiler Contest Silver Award and the 2020 Equine Science Placement.
In her free time Lauren enjoy sketching, archery and horseback riding. After graduation she will be attending Macomb Community College and work towards becoming a veterinary assistant.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Lauren says, “It has allowed me to grow and learn as well as give me a chance to meet new people and make friends.”
Auto Body &
Nicholas Young is from Lapeer High School and is the son of Nick and Dana Young. He is honored with the distinction for being the Top Senior in the Auto Body & Collision Repair program.
While in school, Nicholas spent his free time involved with collision repair and with this interest, it has inspired him to work towards owning his own business.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Nicholas responded, “It has meant a lot to me. I’m very grateful for the opportunities I’ve had in my class and the friendships I’ve made with students as well as my teachers.”
Gracie Gregory is from North Branch High School and the daughter of Ethan and Natalie Stabenau. She has the distinction of being the Top Senior in the Culinary Arts program.
During her free time, Gracie participates in Skills USA, competitive cheer and powerlifting. After graduation she will be attending Mott Community College in order to gain her Associate’s degree in Baking and Pastry Arts.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Gracie said, “Being a part of Culinary Arts has helped me fulfill a passion of mine. Ed Tech has taught me new things about baking, culinary and it has also set me up for a great future and a great job.”
Health Science Professions
Jennifer Moore is from Imlay City High School and is the daughter of Tom Moore, Vicki Foote and Matt Foote. She has the distinction of being selected the Top Senior in the Health Science Professions program.
Jennifer has been involved in many activities while attending Ed Tech such as joining HOSA as a junior, chosen to be the junior representative for the chapter and elected President for the chapter in her senior year. She was also inducted into the National Technical Honor Society, serving as secretary and a member of the National Society of High School Scholars. Finally, she has successfully obtained her certificates in the HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), the American Heart Association BLS (Basic Life Support) and CPR as well as being awarded Magna Cum Laude while attending Baker College.
During her free time, she enjoys cooking, working at Orchard Grove Health Campus as a nursing assistant and spending time with her family.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Jennifer says, “Being a part of Health Science Professions I & II has taught me that no matter what amount of hard work gets put on you, still continue to reach for your dreams, you will get through it. This class has been by far the one that has set me apart from my high school classmates. I am ready to go off to college, I have been taught how to properly take notes, manage my time, take tests and most importantly, study. While taking this class I have obtained many different certifications such as HIPAA, American Heart BLS and CPR, OSHA Communications and Workplace Safety and Phlebotomy. I will be graduating high school and be able to work as a phlebotomist in June of 2021. Not only have Mrs. Cowhy and Mrs. Stallsmith helped me with my education, but they have also been there every single day I walk into their classroom. I could not have chosen a better education pathway.”
Betsabe Galindo is from Imlay City High School and is the daughter of David Galindo Zepeda and Luz Maria Munguia. She has the distinction for being the Top Senior in the Health Occupations program.
During high school Betsabe was awarded a Mathematical Award, JV Girls’ soccer award and a Citizenship Award. In her free time, she enjoys drawing, painting, learning new languages and designing clothes.
After high school, she will be attending Macomb Community College and plans on receiving her certification as a nursing assistant and will then continue to work towards becoming a registered nurse.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Betsabe says, “Being a part of my Ed Tech program has helped me to mentally and physically prepare myself for my future. I have two amazing and supportive teachers who have helped me along the way. Health Occupations has helped me to love the medical field more than before. I was hesitant at first and doubted myself many times during the year but I have learned to push myself to achieve my goals and grow as a person.”
Randy Graham is from Almont High School and is the son of Randy Graham and Patricia Graham. He has been honored with the distinction of being the Top Senior in the IT Net program.
Randy was awarded first place in the Region and State for BPA C++, he also spends much of his time drawing and programming and has career plans in Computer Programming, Process Engineering or Game Development.
When posed the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Randy says, “Being part of the IT Net program meant connecting with like-minded people and getting the resources to do well in the future. I liked everything I learned and it means taking responsibility to learn as much as possible and help my fellow peers as well when I could. The Ed Tech program, to me, is a community.”
Robotics & Mechatronics
Dawson Gonda is from North Branch High School and the son of Chad and Carly Gonda. He has earned the distinction of being the Top Senior for the Robotics & Mechatronics Program.
During high school he strived for excellence and achieved honor roll every year and spends his free time doing schoolwork.
After high school he has plans to attend Macomb Community College and work towards a degree within mechatronics.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Dawson says, “It means a lot to me since the information I am learning in class will help me a lot with the career I plan to go into.”
Public Safety Careers
Jessica Feola is from North Branch High School and the daughter of Lynn Marshall. She has the distinction of being the Top Senior in the Public Safety and Protective Services program.
While in school, Jessica was awarded a Principal Award, during the 2021 SKILLS USA competition, she was awarded Gold placing in the First Responder/CPR performance and spends her free time working at a local North Branch restaurant after school.
After graduation, her plans will be to take an EMT class to establish her dream career.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Jessica says, “Being a part of public safety means the absolute world. I love the teachers and material I have learned. I am very passionate about EMS and this program has allowed me to reach my goals and dreams of becoming a licensed EMT.”
Power Sports & Equipment
Jacob Carroll is from Imlay City High School and the son of Rebecca Grapentin and David Grapentin. He has received the distinction for being the Top Senior in the Power Sports & Equipment program.
While in high school, Jacob received a perfect attendance award as well as an award at Skills USA. In his free time, he enjoys restoring and rebuilding dirt bikes, riding dirt bikes, stand up jet skis and watching drag racing.
After finishing high school, he has plans to attend Macomb Community College and pursue an Associate’s degree in automotive technology.
When asked the question, “What has being a part of your program meant to you?” Jacob says, “Being a part of Ed Tech has taught me a lot of important skills, life lessons, knowledge and has introduced me to some amazing people. Ed Tech has helped me discover my passion and what I love to do.”
Careers in Education
Angela Dervishi is from Imlay City High School and the daughter of Eli and Nula Dervishi. She has the honored distinction for being the Top Senior in the Careers in Education program.
While in high school, she was awarded All A’s Honor Roll status, best attendance and an MVP varsity tennis award. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, going for long drives while listening to some good music and spending money at the mall.
After high school, Angela has plans to attend Oakland University and major in teaching.
When posed the question, “What has being a part of your program meant to you?” She replies, “Being in the Ed Tech program has taught me so many different things and I met so many amazing new people. If it wasn’t for Ed Tech, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. I have so much more confidence and feel more prepared for the future. Thanks to my amazing and supportive teachers and friends who always believed in me to do better.”
Computer Aided Design
Miya Wolff is from Dryden High School and the daughter of Scott Wolff and Kimberly Riley. She has the distinction of being the Top Senior in the Computer Aided Design program.
During high school Miya received first place at the 2019-2020 SkillsUSA competition in Technical Drafting, was a National Merit Scholar Finalist in 2021 and received the Breaking Traditions Award for CAD in 2021.
Miya was actively involved in many activities such as band, President of Student Council, National Honor Society, the FIRST Robotics team, Drama Club, National Technical Honor Society, Head Editor of The Dryden Red & Black newspaper, as well as varsity basketball and softball.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Miya says, “Being in CAD has opened my eyes to a career path that I had never considered before. I learned that I had both a skill and passion for drafting/design and I am so grateful for everything I have gotten to learn and experience.”
Marketing & Entrepreneurship
Teagan O’Bryan is from Dryden High School and the daughter of Sean and Aimee O’Bryan. She has the distinction of being the Top Senior in the Marketing & Entrepreneurship program.
During high school Teagan was awarded the 2021 DECA Emerging Leader of the Year, received Academic Honor Roll and Certificate of Character for 4 years, Academic Letters in 17-18 and 19-20, a 2019 Tri-Athlete Award, Scholar Athlete Award for 2019 and 2020 and finally, Outstanding Leadership Award in 2020.
Teagan was actively involved in many things such as varsity cheer captain, track, cross country, National Honor Society President, Class Treasurer, DECA Chapter President and Virtual Enterprise Student Influencer. She also was a member of National Technical Honor Society, CEO of Imagineers Firm and Co-President of the Four County Community Foundation’s Youth Advisory Committee.
After graduation she plans on attending Northwood University to pursue a dual degree in business management and sustainability. She wants to go into the field of business management, finding a career such as working as a CEO or sustainability director, where she can encourage more eco-friendly practices within the business industry.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Teagan says, “As cliché as it sounds, Ed-Tech has truly changed my life. It has opened so many doors that I would have never known were there. I’ve spent my whole life trying to find a place where I fit, I knew from the first day I came into the Ed-Tech building that this was the place for me. I’ve built amazing friendships and developed skills that will help me in every aspect of my life. Looking back on high school, the Marketing and Entrepreneurship program has held my favorite memories by far.”
Gavin Kaeding is from Imlay City’s Venture High School and the son of Brad and Anita Kaeding. He has the distinction for being the Top Senior in the Diesel Technology program.
While attending Ed Tech, Gavin has successfully completed online training for Automotive Chemicals and Heavy-Duty Diesel Technology Safety. He has also completed a comprehensive air brake training program in the operation and maintenance of heavy-duty vehicle air brake systems and components, through the Bendix Corporation. Lastly, Gavin is very proud in receiving his certification in Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) for Medium/Heavy Duty Truck Brakes.
During his free time, he enjoys kayaking with his lovely girlfriend, watching television, movies and hanging out with his veiled chameleon named Herbert. Although he does not plan to attend college directly out of high school, Gavin will continue to work at IDF Cleanup to continue expanding his knowledge, growing a hefty tool arsenal and an optimism on where his present path will lead him.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” Gavin says, “Being a part of Diesel Technology meant a lot of things to me. First of all, it filled my head with plenty of knowledge and mental tools to prepare me for the industry. It also taught me to work hard and always stay busy, even if that means picking up a broom. Mr. Bammer meant a lot to me as well, he was such a smart, kind, caring guy. He was a great teacher and an even better mentor. I have learned so many things from him and his memory will always be with me because without him, I wouldn’t be where or who I am today. Mr. Drake and Mr. O’Dell also mean a lot to me because they have helped me a lot through the work experience program. I appreciate and recognize Mr. Drake for being strong and leading the class through the rest of the year. In conclusion, Diesel Technology and the Lapeer County Education and Technology Center means a lot to me. I am proud to say I was a student there and am happy for all the future students to attend.”
Construction Trades Technology
Isaac Schmitz is from Imlay City High School and the son of Matt Schmitz. He has the distinction of being the Top Senior in the Construction Trades Technology program.
While in high school he was involved in varsity baseball, football and outdoor sports such as hunting and fishing. After high school he plans on seeking a union apprenticeship in carpentry and will go to work for Monarch, which is a company that owns rental properties throughout the U.S. Eventually, he would like to take some college courses at a community college.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” He says, “Ed Tech Construction Trades gave me the opportunity to learn how to build houses, use hand tools and develop my skills for a future career in the trades.”
Delaney Miller is from Lapeer High School and the daughter of Shana and Jamie Miller. She has the distinction of being the Top Senior in the Cosmetology program.
During her time at the Lapeer Ed Tech, she placed second in the state for the SkillsUSA Cosmetology competition for 2021. She also stays active as a member of the Cosmetology Advisory Board, dancing on the Competition Team at the studio Dance Connection and as a member of the SkillsUSA competition team in Cosmetology.
Delaney is currently attending Mott Community College through the Early College Program and is working towards getting her Associate’s in Arts, with plans to finish next spring. Delaney also has plans to complete her hours for cosmetology school in order to get her license as soon as she can, as well as get certified in microblading, other semi-permanent makeup techniques and ultimately obtain her career goal as a Medical Esthetician.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” She says, “I try to take advantage of every opportunity that I get and this one has meant the most to me. The instructors here have helped me in so many ways and have opened so many opportunities for me that I am so grateful for.”
Kohle Salmond is from Lapeer High School and the son of Steve Salmond and Tavana Salmond. He has the distinction of being the Top Senior in the Automotive program.
During his time at Ed Tech, Kohle was involved in SKILLS USA during the two years he attended Auto Mechanics.
Upon completing high school, he has plans to continue his education in the auto/diesel program at Ohio Technical College.
When asked the question, “What has it meant to you being a part of your program?” He says, “Being a part of my Ed Tech program has meant for me that I could do something that I like and was actually good at and also my Ed Tech program has allowed me to make friends that I’m really good friends with now, which normally I wouldn’t be.”