Including Pre-K Alana has been attending school in at least one of Quitman School District’s five schools for the last fourteen years. Just as every other senior who has spent their last weeks of school remembering, Alana does have some memories which stick out.
She writes, “The first memory is the trip we took to Memphis, Tennessee in 5th grade. One of my fellow classmates was conversing with my mom and he mentioned the comment, ‘Now I see where Alana gets her attitude’. I will forever remember his words, even though I’m not sure exactly what he meant . Another memory is a field trip we took to Jackson for Beta (Club) in junior high. Coach Russell was the bus driver and while driving he hit a MASSIVE POT HOLE. Everyone went flying to the roof of the bus! And he acted like nothing happened.”
It’s times like those with her classmates that Alana is sure to miss, but it doesn’t take long in a dialogue with her to understand that this QHS 2020 graduate is looking forward to the time ahead.
She’s headed to The University of Southern Mississippi.
“Of course I am sad to leave the little town I’ve known for 18 years, but I am more excited to venture out, see the different places around me, meet new people, make new bonds, and just enjoy my life! I am attending USM in Hattiesburg to major in criminal justice and minor in psychology. This may sound crazy, but I began watching Criminal Minds the beginning of my senior year, and I love the job the characters play. Trying to learn and study someone and their behavior to solve crimes is a career that allows flexibility as well as a different agenda every day. I wanted something that would allow me a different experience everyday and the opportunity to learn along the way. I don’t want to just sit at a desk or be in a classroom. I’m not sure if I want to go down the police/detective route or the attorney/lawyer route.”
Alana has time to discover what route she will be taking while she is doing a little cooking along the way. After two years of culinary classes at the Clarke County Career Center because she says, “I grew up with my mom cooking and baking literally every day so I figured the culinary experience would help me be good as her 😂, and I do recommend the class if you are the type to eat the same food all the tine like I do 😂. I didn’t ever want to try the new food, but Mrs Tucker made us.”
Mrs. Tucker is not the only teacher who asked the senior to push past boundaries she set for herself. She explains,
“The teacher that left an impact on me was definitely Mrs Reeves! I actually won a scholarship from the Quitman Woman’s Club because she made everyone in her class write the essay. She pushed you to do your best despite what was going on in your life outside of school. She does care about her students genuinely and is the most honest person, even as a teacher. She pushed me the two years I had her to actually do the work and think as I’m doing it.”
Alana is academically ranked #3 in a class of 118, and this FCCLA and FBLA member is graduating Quitman High School with 9 dual enrollment college credit hours, though she is not leaving without some advice to her underclassmen.
“Always put school first. No matter what’s going on at home or work or with your friends. Make sure school is your first priority. And remember your grades in 9th grade are just as important as they are in your 12th grade year!”