Panola schools graduate 357

Published 8:20 am Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Top students lead Class of ‘23

More than 350 Panola County students marked the end of the senior year this month, receiving degrees at graduation ceremonies of their respective high schools.

At North Delta School, 25 students received diplomas on May 12.

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Top graduates at North Delta School were Valedictorian Millie Williams, Salutatorian Bryan Fly, and Historian Sophie Williams.

At NDS, Millie Williams served as the President of National Honor Society, Secretary of Student Council, Vice President of Mu Alpha Theta, Secretary of Anchor Club, and was a member of the FCA and the 30+ Club for ACT. 

She was chosen as a Hugh O’Brien Youth Leader, attended the Washington DC Youth Leadership program through the Electric Cooperatives of Mississippi.

Millie has been the Secretary of the Batesville Sub-Deb Cotillion Club for the past two years, is a member of the Panola Playhouse Jr. Board, and participates in Panola Playhouse shows and activities, most recently seen as Faye McFaye in their production of Faith County.

Millie is an active member of the Batesville Church of Christ Youth Group and has participated in Lads to Leaders since she was in kindergarten

Salutatorian Ben Fly graduated with a 3.85+ GPA while taking advanced classes. He was a member of the Anchor Club, National Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, and received a leadership award at the 2022 Electric Cooperatives of Mississippi Youth leadership workshop. 

He was also a member of the Green Wave tennis team and was a Rotary Club Student of the Month. He is a member of the First Baptist Church, Charleston.

Historian Sophie Williams was the President of the Senior Class, an honor roll student, a member of the National Honor Society, Crusades for Christ, was a Fellowship of Christian Athletes leader, was the President of the Anchor Club, and a member of the yearbook staff. She has been voted Most Athletic twice, class favorite six times, and represented her class on the Homecoming court for four years.

Sophie cheered for the Green Waves for several years, was the recipient of two UCA pin it forward leadership awards, and helped her team win the MAIS Game Day Championship twice. 

Sophie played for the Lady Waves basketball team beginning in third grade. She has received Most Improved, Gym Rat Award, MVP, and was on the MAIS 4A State Championship team. Last year she received All-Conference Honorable Mention and was named to the All-District and North Half Tournament Teams. 

She was named All District this year. She also played for the Mississippi Jazz AAU Travel Team where she was ranked in the top 50 of the class of 2023 basketball players in the state.

Sophie was a Batesville Sub-Deb Cotillion member, attended the Washington D.C. Youth Leadership Tour through the electric cooperatives of MS, and was Rotary Student of the Month.

Sophie is an active member of the Batesville Church of Christ Youth Group

At North Panola High School, where 61 students graduated, Brianna Lashell Hammond was the Valedictorian. She is the daughter of Jammie Smith and Lamarko Hammond and the granddaughter of Charlene Smith and Madison Smith.

She has participated in: The Beta Club, G.I.R.L.S (Growing in Real Life Situations), The Honor Society and JMG (Jobs for Mississippi Graduates). 

Her goal is to become a registered nurse beginning at Northwest Community College.

Salutatorian for the NPHS class was Zykiah Oliver, the daughter of Shunkeitha Mabry and Undrea Oliver. 

She is a member of Liberty Hill C.M.E. She has participated in: JROTC, Cheer, National Beta Club, and an Archonette of Upsilon Tau Zeta. 

Her goal is to attend the University of Mississippi while doing the Army Reserves. 

South Panola High School had 271 graduates at the Batesville Civic Center this year.

Valedictorian was Aidan Williams, Salutatorian was Emma Grace Bainer, and Historian was Ava Jay Williams.