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Jonesboro students nominated for Governor's Honors

By Rachel Shirey

JONESBORO — Four students from Our Lady of Mercy Catholic High School have been nominated for the 2013 Georgia Governor’s Honors Program (GHP), a four-week academic program designed to provide academically gifted students with a challenging curriculum not offered in the standard classroom.

Rachel Jinks of Jonesboro, Caleb Lewis of Jonesboro, Ijeoma Emefo of Fayetteville and Nastasia Buckley of Newnan were each nominated by teachers in their respected subjects of biology, French or dance.

“The whole point of it is to help them become independent learners and obviously it’s a great thing to have on their résumé for college, so it is like doing summer school, but it’s only for four weeks,” said Monica Haaland, OLM’s director of advancement.

During the four weeks of the program at Valdosta State University, students will spend mornings in their nominated subject, exploring advanced topics.

During the afternoons, students choose one of the other areas to study and evenings are filled with seminars, activities, concerts and performances.

“GHP is such a competitive program that even being nominated is an accomplishment,” GHP Director Dale Lyles said in a press release. “I congratulate the students of Our Lady of Mercy Catholic High School and look forward to meeting them and their parents at the interviews.”

More than 2,900 students from across the state will be interviewed and auditioned in January and February, and 690 finalists will be chosen to participate in the summer program.

“I feel like it’s great that we’re able to nominate four students,” Haaland said. “Obviously, it reflects the strength of our curriculum and not just in academics, but also in our arts as we do have someone in dance going and biology, which is one of our hard core sciences, and two people going in French, which is great because it shows the strength of our Language Arts program as well.”