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Image by Sam Balye


As we celebrate our students and the tremendous resilience, hard work, and growth they demonstrated this year, we invite you to support our work with a donation that represents the year you graduated from high school.


Class of 2024 Valedictorian 
Quincy, 12th Grade

Quincy’s attendance improved over his high school career, and he participated in a dual enrollment program that has allowed him to graduate with both his diploma and an associate degree. He is the first person in his family to attend college and plans to continue his education at South College next year, studying psychology.


Most Improved  
Joy, 3rd Grade

Joy’s CIS program manager was so proud to see her recognized as the “Most Improved” student in her class after they started working together during recess and study halls to catch up on her math and practice her spelling. Joy’s brother and mom were rightly very proud of her, too!

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Biggest Step Forward
Peter, 11th Grade

Peter recently passed his driver’s permit test, and once he has a photo ID, he will likely be able to secure a job through the local American Job Center Summer Youth Program. His CIS program manager is so proud of his progress towards getting his license and finding a job—and that he recently scored 27 on his first ACT attempt!


Most Committed 
Lucy, 12th Grade

The first senior in her class to have all her scholarships awarded to her, Lucy, a talented artist, has proven her tenacity by taking dual enrollment classes and graduating with terrific grades while helping raise her nine siblings.  Now, she's excitedly preparing to attend Bethel University, eager to spread her wings and pursue her dream of becoming an art teacher.


Most Determined  
Ben, 12th Grade

Ben, always the first one to offer to help around school, transformed his health and well-being along with his academics. “I don’t think I have ever worked with a student that has come as far as Ben,” his CIS program manager said. “He now has hopes and dreams and he has proven to us and himself that he can do anything he puts his mind to.”

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Best Self Advocate
Ross, 8th Grade

“Ross has been willing to reflect and ‘do the work’ to create room for change this year. He is extremely intelligent and thinks deeply about the world. He has been dealt a very tough set of cards, which has brought a lot of challenges, mentally, academically, and behaviorally,” his CIS program manager said. Ross and his program manager have met weekly and he has come a long way in being able to navigate conflict and advocate for himself.


Best Turnaround  
Tiffany, 7th Grade

Tiffany made new friends who valued kindness and supported her this year. She worked with her CIS program manager - who has known her since 2nd grade - to improve her grades, attendance, and build friendships, prioritize her academics. Her program manager is so proud of her progress.

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Biggest Transformation  
Alice, 12th Grade

Now the college-bound captain of the cheer team, Alice was so shy her freshman year that she would not ask for help or tell teachers her name. Alice has overcome sadness and adversity, including the loss of multiple family members, along her path to graduation and her CIS program manager is so proud that she never lost hope and kept pushing to be the best version of herself.


Most Tenacious
Ciara, 7th Grade

Ciara, an aspiring vet, started her 7th-grade year determined to shape her future positively. Struggling with depression and not wanting to be at school, her program manager encouraged her to join her Girls Inc. group which meets once a week to learn more about mental health and how she can take care of herself. She has made great strides, developing new friendships as she continues to fight for herself and her future.


Biggest Growth 
Amy, 12th Grade

Amy has made many improvements this year, but her biggest goal was to stop vaping, something she has tried to do in the past. Her program manager said, “She has gone through many struggles in her life. Some she has overcome, some she is still working on, and vaping is one she attacks every day. As of today, she has been clean for 106 days. I am very proud of her. More importantly, she is proud of herself.”


Hardest Worker
Eddie, 12 Grade

Always a diligent student, Eddie was on track to graduate early until he became a father to a child with medical needs and his grades began to slip. His CIS program manager worked with the school to allow Eddie to make up assignments in her office every day and is so proud that he caught up and was still able to graduate early and start his next journey at Chattanooga State Community College, where he is studying to be an EMT.


Most Resilient
Tori, 12th Grade

Tori looks forward to pursuing her commercial driver’s license and traveling the country as a truck driver after graduation. The support of her CIS program manager has been critical throughout her high school journey as she navigated housing instability and other challenges. Her program manager helped her obtain her birth certificate (in another state) so that she could get a job and worked with community partners to ensure she was able to dress up for the school’s Oscar Night and prom. 

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