Thomas Jefferson

High School | Home of the Spartans

Superb Seniors

Posted 06/01/2017 by Baxter Stein

Principal Michael Christoff gives a heartfelt speech addressing the award recipients. photo by Mia Grijalva

Senior Awards Night says goodbye to the Class of 2017.

At 5:00pm on May 2nd, 2017, a ceremony began at the Radisson Hotel to acknowledge the accomplishments of the senior class. This ceremony, known as Senior Awards Night, was accompanied by a nice meal for award recipients and up to three guests. Attendees were served appetizers and dinner before they were called to the stage to receive their awards.

One special aspect of Senior Awards Night is that is by invitation only, so you must win an award in order to be invited. Principal Mike Christoff explained, “We used to do it – a couple years ago – with everybody, and not all the kids getting awards showed up. We decided to move it off campus and to invite award recipients and their families only.” The exclusivity and special location encourages kids to go and receive recognition for their achievements, and makes the whole experience even more special. Awards are given out by each department at TJ, and all recipients are nominated by their teachers. Department specific awards weren’t the only accomplishments recognized at Senior Awards Night, however. Winners of the Robert Sullivan and Interact scholarships were announced over the course of the ceremony. A notable part of the ceremony is that seniors didn’t know what award or awards they were going to get until they were invited to the front of the room to receive them.

At the end of the ceremony, Christoff gave a heartfelt speech to the attendees. He said his goodbyes to the class of 2017, and spoke about his pride in their success. He talked about how he was proud of them for what they had achieved, but excited to see what the future would hold for them. Senior Colton Hook received an award at the ceremony for achievement in mathematics. Hook said, “I enjoyed seeing everyone who was recognized for what they did and it was fun to celebrate that. Also hearing what all the teachers had to say about the students who were winning awards was great because you don’t normally get to hear how teachers feel about some of their students.

The current plan is to hold Senior Awards Night for many years to come. This will allow other TJ students to receive recognition for their accomplishments as seniors. Hook noted, “If you hope to win an award at senior awards in the future, put your heart and effort into what you enjoy doing. Nobody who won an award got one for something they didn’t enjoy doing. Everybody who earned an award was good at something they liked to do.” Christoff also offered his advice, saying, “Continue to work really hard, work with your teachers and try to build relationships with them.” If maximum effort is put in, a student will be able to receive recognition for their accomplishments at Senior Awards Night.