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Valedictorian

Sailor Hutton

Parents: Brent and Tricia Hutton of Bandon

Sailor Hutton grew up in Bandon, attending a private Christian school until high school. She has been a stand-out athlete at Bandon High School on both the cross country and track teams, with her parents as coaches. She recently won both the 3,000 and 1,500 in the 2A division for the fourth straight year at the OSAA state track meet. Her twin brother Hunter also set records at the state track meet and younger sister Holly is also an outstanding runner.

“Having both my mom and dad always there at practices was nice,” Sailor said.

Sailor will be attending Boise State University in Boise, Idaho this fall on an athletic scholarship, running both cross country and track.

She plans to attain a Bachelor's Degree in Imagery Science, with the goal of going into the medical imaging field and hopes to eventually work for a hospital performing ultrasounds. To that end, Sailor was involved with the BHS Healthcare Pathway Program, led by longtime teacher Lori Groves. The program introduces students to careers in the medical field with specific curriculum and hands-on experience. While in the program, students also earn college credit.

“I’m really excited just for the whole experience,” Sailor said of college. “Plus, living in a different place, I’ve never done anything like that. It was kind of my dream as long as I can remember to get to run at the collegiate level. The women runners to me are really impressive, they really worked hard to get where they are and it carries over into other areas of life. I’m excited to be part of the team. I’m not sure what to expect, but I’m excited.”

Aside from running, which is her favorite hobby, Sailor keeps busy with school activities, and her church.

“Another thing that is important to me is being involved with my church youth group and with other church activities,” Sailor said. “Having a relationship with Jesus Christ is what grounds me and makes me thankful for what I’ve been given and achieved.”

Sailor has some great memories of growing up. One that sticks out in her mind is that although both the cross country and track teams are small, there was always a lot of team spirit and team bonding.

“Even if one person has a bad race, the team can still do well,” Sailor said. “That’s something I love about cross country, it’s all about the team.”

Sailor earned the highest grade point average in the Class of 2018, a 3.98, and worked hard to maintain her GPA.

“People told me high school really matters,” Sailor said. “Just being at the top of your class gives you more opportunities for your future.”

During her four years at BHS, Sailor was also involved on the Associated Student Body as historian and intraclass rivalry chairman. She volunteered with many activities, including American Red Cross blood drives, the Lions Club pancake feed and Cranberry Run, church fundraisers, at Washed Ashore and was a counselor at Camp Fircroft and for a daily Vacation Bible School in the summer. She was captain of the girls cross country team and captain of the track team for the girls long distance runners.

For her senior project, she held a daily running camp for children in kindergarten through sixth grade.

She also worked for pay as a babysitter and as a caddie at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort

In addition to being valedictorian, Sailor was awarded the BHS Female Scholar Award every year of high school and is a member of the National Honor Society.

Fun fact: Sailor's mother (Tricia Brown Hutton), grandmother (Donna Staten Brown) and great-grandmother (Patricia Long Staten) all graduated from BHS. Her grandparents on both sides Tom and Donna Brown and Tom and Beth Hutton, have always been involved with their grandchildren, attending all the meets and cheering Sailor and Hunter on.

“Family is a really big part of my life,” Sailor said. “I have a lot of family members who’ve always supported me.”

Salutatorian

Aryahna Converse

Parents: Michael Converse of Colorado and Lori (Cannon) Converse of Bandon

Aryahna has maintained a 3.93 grade point average in high school, after moving back to her mother and father's hometown as a freshman.

“I’m proud of maintaining the GPA I was able to maintain, especially with a job,” Aryahna said. “I’ve had a job since freshman year.”

She has worked at Edgewaters Restaurant as a hostess five days a week for the past three years and also works on her grandparents' cranberry farm.

With her father in the military, Aryahna lived in Germany, Texas, Colorado and finally in the Portland area. She last attended a large school in the Beaverton School District.

“My mom Lori went to BHS and graduated in 1999, and I wanted to overcome the odds and make my parents proud,” she said.

Her mother now works at a local credit union in Coquille. Her father also has relatives in the area, including her uncle and aunt Ken and Canada Converse and her grandparents Lupe and Allen Converse and Lynn and Gary Cannon, as well as many cousins.

“One of the reasons we moved back was to be closer to family, because we hadn’t seen them in years and this is where my parents grew up,” Aryahna said.

Moving to Bandon gave Aryahna, an only child, a new sense of belonging and confidence.

“I’ve moved around a lot and haven’t had a base to grow relationships with people very well, but since I’ve moved here, I was able to do that,” Aryahna said. “I’ve been able to connect with and bond with people better and I think this is the longest I’ve been at any school. And since it’s a small school, everybody knows each other.”

She explained that at her previous school, there were so many students that each grade was separated from the other grades. She likes being able to know students in every grade at BHS.

Aryahna enjoys the small-town atmosphere and has made good friends in Bandon, as well as reconnecting with family.

While in school, Aryahna has been involved in community service projects such as American Red Cross blood drives, beach clean-ups, volunteering at Ocean Crest Elementary teaching students about shorebirds, volunteering at Washed Ashore and with the Go Native project and helping at Pacific View Assisted Living.

While in high school, Aryahna was involved with the BHS Healthcare Pathway Program, led by longtime teacher Lori Groves. The program introduces students to careers in the medical field with specific curriculum and hands-on experience. While in the program, students also earn college credit.

Some of her best memories of high school involve making new friends. In her spare time, Aryahna enjoys spending time outdoors and with her family.

Aryahna recently was named a Ford Scholar, the only senior named as one this year at BHS. The Ford Family Foundation will pay for 90 percent of her unmet financial needs at an Oregon university.

She plans to attend Western Oregon University, then transfer to Oregon State University, with the ultimate goal of becoming a nurse anesthesiologist.

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