The Wilson Times

Friday, June 07, 2013 12:00 AM

Academic Aces: Fike

The Wilson Times talked with the top seniors from each public school in the area about their high school experience, their plans for life after graduation and about what it’s like to juggle academics, sports and part-time jobs.

The students highlighted in today’s edition were selected by the administration at each school based on their grade-point averages as of early May.

Graduations will be held Saturday at Fike High School at 10 a.m., at Hunt High School at 1 p.m. and at Beddingfield High School at 4 p.m.



Drayton Williams believes that if you work hard then success will find you.

That’s one of the reasons why he encourages younger students to take the hard classes and to make good grades. It’s also one of the reasons why he wants students to know they can take IB courses and play sports, too.

"If you work hard, you will be successful,” he said. "Get involved in everything because you don’t want to miss out.”

In high school, Drayton, 18, has played soccer and football, ran indoor track, played tennis and travel soccer. He’s been active in SADD, Youth and Government, National Honor Society and Science National Honor Society. Drayton attended Governor’s School. He’s also active in his church and a participant in mission trips.

Drayton works as a soccer referee, something he wants to continue to do in college. He’s going to play summer league tennis.

Drayton will miss his close friends. He’s enjoyed the Sunday afternoon phone conversations with John Flinn talking about the week ahead of them.

Overall, Drayton said he’s ready to move on from high school to bigger and better things.

He will study business and possibly double major in political science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His future plan is to go to law school or do something in the business world.

Drayton thinks applying for scholarships and going through the interview process for those scholarships will help him later when he’s interviewing for jobs. Competing for the Parks Scholarship, Drayton said he got to see the "cream of the crop” of students from across the state and nation. So he has an idea of who he’s up against in college and in the future.

Drayton has recently discovered "West Wing” and watches "Sports Center” regularly. He’s currently reading a biography about Harry S. Truman. Drayton’s AP history teacher got him interested in reading about historical figures.

Drayton is the son of Spencer and Trina Williams.



Martha-Scott Benson hasn’t turned her back on North Carolina State University.

She’s still a State fan.

But she decided to abandon her dream of attending college there because she’s interested in a career in physical therapy. Considering her career interests, Martha-Scott said it looked like the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was the better option.

She plans to study biology.

Martha-Scott, 18, applied to four colleges. She described the college application process as "tedious and time-consuming.” But she feels her time at Fike prepared her for college.

Martha-Scott points to her IB Biology class as being difficult but something that will definitely help her in the future.

During high school, Martha-Scott ran cross country. She swam. She ran outdoor track, played tennis and was even a cheerleader. Clubs she was involved in included National Honor Society, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Science National Honor Society, Youth in Government, SADD and Keywanettes. Martha-Scott has attended Governor’s School, Girls State and Summer Ventures.

She takes dance lessons outside of school and is active in her church.

Balancing her time between school and activities has been tough. On Wednesdays, she would finish track around 7 p.m. then go to dance class before heading home to start homework.

"Pick something you know you’ll enjoy and feel proud about it once you’ve finished,” Martha-Scott said offering advice to freshmen.

This summer, she will work as a counselor at Camp Albemarle and lifeguard at the YMCA.

When she has a few moments to watch TV, Martha-Scott tunes in to "Pretty Little Liars,” and "Modern Family.” She’s most recently read "To Kill A Mockingbird” by Harper Lee. Martha-Scott said she’s trying to get through reading some of the classics.

She is the daughter of Scott and Paula Benson.



John Flinn spent his last few days of school seeing teachers with whom he needed to check in. But after his IB and AP exams were done, high school for John was over.

He applied to three colleges — the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Duke University and Stanford — and got accepted at all three. But for John the decision was easy. He’s been a Tar Heel fan all of his life so he will head to Chapel Hill this fall.

He’s undecided at this point what degree he wants to pursue. He’s interested in economics, maybe business. In the future, John might pursue a career in investment banking.

He most recently read "The Financial Crisis and the Free Market Cure: Why Pure Capitalism is the World Economy’s Only Hope” by John Allison, retired leader of BB&T bank.

John, 18, said the book opened his eyes to a lot of things about money and government.

John encourages freshmen to not be lazy and to take harder courses in high school because it will pay off down the road. John said AP History was probably the hardest course he took at Fike, but it was probably his favorite class.

John said students also need luck to get through high school "unscathed.”

The most difficult thing for John about high school has been not getting enough sleep. He tended to fall asleep in class. John drinks lots of coffee.

He’s played tennis and ran track. John’s been active in the Youth and Government Club, National Honor Society, and Science National Honor Society. He’s attended Boys State and Boys Nation. He’s also an Eagle Scout.

He just started working as a cart boy at the Wilson Country Club. He’ll spend his summer cleaning golf carts and picking up golf balls off the driving range and doing other odd jobs.

John is happy because the job is outside and he gets to play golf for free.

During his free time, John enjoys watching "Sons of Anarchy” and "Duck Dynasty.”

He is the son of Steve and Robin Flinn.

©The Wilson Times, Wilson, North Carolina.
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