Michale Meyers | Nikiski Middle-High School #Classof2017

Michale Meyers
Nikiski Middle-High School
Class of 2017

Nikiski Middle High School Michale Meyers

Michale Meyers is the first high school graduate in his family, and has taken advantage of every opportunity throughout high school to prepare himself for the world of work. With a diploma in hand, eight semesters of welding courses under his belt, and a job already in place with MagTec, Michale knows his future is bright.

Michale attributes his success in school to the love and support of his parents who encouraged him to keep his eyes on the prize and to Mr. Bostic and Mr. Rizzo, two educators he said always pushed him to do the right thing and stay on the right track.

After graduation, Michale will continue to work in his position as a roustabout while pursuing his dream of a career in welding. For Michale, having a high school diploma means having options, like the opportunity to take a project management course at Kenai Peninsula College to move up the ranks. He is a great example of a student who has positioned himself for success. With a background working for L&G Enterprises and MagTec, this brand new high school graduate already has real world experience.

We at Nikiski High know Michale will have far-reaching impacts on his community as he brings his joy for life, sense of humor and hard work and determination to bear. Michale is going to make great things happen for himself and others.

Facebook: Nikiski Middle-High School

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

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Vera Fefelov | Nikolaevsk School #Classof2017

Vera Fefelov
Nikolaevsk School
Class of 2017

Vera Fefelov Nikolaevsk

Vera Fefelov, is the Nikolaevsk Class of 2017 Valedictorian, graduating summa cum laude with a GPA of 4.105, with an incredible work ethic academically and athletically. Through hard and focused work she is graduating one year early. She has earned many academic and athletic awards during her tenure at Nikolaevsk and has maintained a sense of humor and humility the entire time.

Vera will attend Georgetown University in the fall where she will major in International Business Regional Studies at the McDonough School of Business, with a minor in Russian. Vera hopes to “get other languages under her belt” in future. When asked if she had any advice for the schoolmates she is leaving behind she stated,

“Never doubt yourself in anything you put your mind to. Just because you may experience failure in some way, it’s what you do with that failure that defines you. Don’t be afraid to push your limits–that’s where you find yourself and learn what you are capable of. The struggle is definitely worth it. It isn’t easy–but it’s worth it, trust me!”

Facebook: Nikolaevsk School

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

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Terence Paul Swenning | Nanwalek School #Classof2017

Terence Paul Swenning
Nanwalek School
Class of 2017

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Terence Paul Swenning is an inspiring graduate with exceptional determination, talent, and perseverance. Rather than taking a solely academic route through his schooling, Terence has demonstrated the ability to finish school with attention to academics, artistry, and athletics. Balanced with determination, Terence moves into the world with energy and independence.

Terence was eager to finish school and move into his adult life, and succeeded in earning his diploma a semester early. Spring semester was spent working for the Nanwalek IRA Council, and creating a business plan for his next adventure.

An ambitious young man, Terence plans to move to California to start a business selling t-shirts with his own artistic designs. He is currently putting his mind to the finances of this endeavor, seeking small business loans, and making necessary contacts in California. This independent means of making a living will allow him to pursue professional skateboarding.

Throughout school, Terence was known as a strong reader, a talented artist, a natural musician, and an active skateboarder.

Terence went about these talents gently, but firmly. Although students and staff know Terence as a quiet student, we have always been clear that he has a strong voice and a determination.

Terence is a driven young man, and his work ethic is very strong. To put the necessary pieces in place to move from the rural village of Nanwalek with 275 residents to the large state of California and start a small business to compliment his talents and lifestyle is remarkable. Everyone in Nanwalek will be watching to see his plan unfold!

Facebook: Nanwalek School

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

Emily Koziczkowski | Kenai Central High School #Classof2017

Emily Koziczkowski
Kenai Central High School
Class of 2017

Kenai Central HS Emily Koziczkowski s

Emily Koziczkowski is a shining example of how life’s challenges shape who we become. Emily’s yearbook quote: “Life’s a climb but the view is great” exemplifies her approach to her education. She took the most rigorous classes offered at Kenai Central and still excelled. When she had completed the highest math offered, AP calculus, she decided to continue taking math at Kenai Peninsula College. She took calculus II and III and earned A’s in both classes. Additionally, she took psychology so that she could get a head start on some of the general college requirements. She has maintained a 4.0 GPA throughout high school, she is an Honor Graduate, and represents Kenai Central as one of the valedictorians. Because of her dedication to excellence in her education, she has received a variety of scholarships to help pay for her college. In the fall she will attend Portland University and pursue a degree in chemistry. Since middle school, her dream has been to become a doctor. She will achieve this goal one day!

Emily is not just an academic, she is a well-rounded young woman and is a role model in how she gives back to her community. She has a drive to help others and demonstrates this by volunteering at the Leeshore Center and the Central Peninsula Hospital, and by coaching volleyball at Kenai Middle School. She is a leader. She was captain of the softball team for the 2016 season, was President of NHS in 2017, and is valuable asset to the KCHS varsity volleyball team.

Emily will leave Kenai Central with everyone cheering her on!

Kenai Central High School Facebook
Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

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Azary Reutov | Kachemak-Selo School #Classof2017

Azary Reutov
Kachemak-Selo School
Class of 2017

K-Selo Azary Reutov senior pic

One of Azary Reutov’s most notable traits is his positivity. He is cheerful and supportive of classmates and a natural leader in school and out. His ready sense of humor, combined with his willingness to work hard, make him sought after as a teammate and friend. As an upperclassman, he has been a great role model to younger students, showing strong and steadily improving academic achievement and consistent attendance.

Azary is also a skilled athlete, and has made a mark in the last several years as a member of the Cougars football team, which brings together students from all three Head of the Bay Russian villages. He has contributed to the team’s growth in his role as quarterback and team captain. His enthusiasm and excitement about football, in victory and defeat, has spread into the Kachemak-Selo community and led to an increase in participants from Kachemak-Selo, as well as interest in the sport among younger students. He can often be seen after school on the community field, in all weather, leading a large diverse group of students in a game of touch football.

This example of Azary’s inspired leadership in the community is just one of many, and Kachemak-Selo is very lucky to call him one of their own.

Kachemak-Selo School website

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

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Ben Peck | Hope School #Classof2017

Class of 2017
Ben Peck
Hope School

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Ben Peck grew up in the small town of Hope, and attended Hope K-12 School which means that Ben spent most of his time in school with a wide variety of students ranging in age from kindergarten through high school. Not a normal high school for most young people! But for Ben, that was just kind of how it was to grow up in a small town of about 150 people on an outside edge of the Kenai Peninsula, and about 90 miles from Anchorage!

Ben did not let being from a small town and a small school stop him from getting the most out of his education and reaching his educational dreams. His GPA is 3.84, and received four scholarship awards: the UAA Scholarship, the Governor’s Scholarship, the Hope PTO Scholarship, and the Kenai Borough Employee Association Scholarship!

Ben started the first debate team for Hope School, and they placed second in the Nikiski High School Debate in February 2017, and ended up going to the State Debate and Forensic 2017 Competition for the first time ever! A small two-man team heading off to state, where they had to prove to the lady at the front desk that they had a right to be there, while she looked and looked for their name on the roster, for a little, not yet known team from tiny Hope, Alaska. They spent two-weeks working every night prepping for that state debate in the shop at the school with their debate coach (Ben’s mother) in order to get the opportunity to go, and then receive special permission from ASAA to attend, because, as a Hope teacher says, “Well, our school is so tiny, we were almost not allowed to send a team! Benjamin made it all happen.”

Ben will head out of Hope to attend the University of Alaska, Anchorage, in the fall. He is planning to major in creative writing and journalism. He enjoys writing and wants to travel, loves history, and the outdoors.

Ben is just a remarkable young man. We are going to miss him around here, but know he will do well. He is smart, bright, and ready to take on the world.

Hope School website

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

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Juan Sarmiento | Homer High School #Classof2017

Class of 2017
Juan Sarmiento
Homer High School

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As a very limited-English speaker newly in the United States, Juan Sarmiento wasn’t sure of the question when he was asked if he wanted to take algebra or geometry. Someone told him that geometry was more advanced, so that’s what he requested. That night he went home and studied online and the next day in class, when the teacher asked a question, it was Juan who answered it—correctly.

Moving from Argentina to Alaska is quite a shock but in the fall of 2017 when he goes from Alaska to Princeton, New Jersey, it will be a shock of a different sort. Juan is an excellent athlete, Poetry Out Loud winner, and a top scholar. He is one of the most independent students ever to graduate from Homer High School while at the same time willing to help anyone who asks, in topics ranging from his native Spanish to calculus. He is also funny, energetic and a good friend.

Juan will be missed a lot and everyone who knows him will be watching to see what ambitious and interesting things he does next!

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Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

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Larion Kuzmin | Homer Flex School #Classof2017

Class of 2017
Homer Flex School
Larion Kuzmin

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Larion enrolled at Homer Flex his sophomore year, focused on receiving a high school diploma. A Russian Old Believer who has captained his own commercial boat since he was 14, Larion brought with him the tenacity and resolve acquired through years of gillnetting in Cordova.

As an English Language Learner who struggled with reading, Larion worked hard for every credit. With his quiet and reserved attitude, he advocated for individualized learning, one on one help, and an alternative schedule. This allowed him to continue fishing while still working toward the degree that means so much to him.

With the support of his family and the staff at Flex, Larion earned his diploma this winter. His January graduation ceremony was a celebration of all his hard work!

Facebook: Homer Flex School

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

Patrick Napier, Connections Homeschool, #Classof2017

Class of 2017
Connections Homeschool
Patrick Napier
[Connections Homeschool]

Connections Homeschool Patrick Napier - Uganda

Using dual credit and Jumpstart opportunities at Kenai Peninsula College (KPC), Patrick Napier earned 33 college credits over the last two years. Approximately one third of Patrick’s high school credits were taken through our Connections Homeschool dual credit program. Patrick’s GPA while earning college credits was a very high 3.88!

While completing a full academic load, Patrick exhibits a friendly demeanor and approach to customers at his full time job at Safeway. He’s traveled to 20 countries, and works to become a good global citizen. For the past three years he pursued missionary work in Uganda and East Africa, working and living in the slums trying to better the lives of impoverished children.

Patrick Napier is an exemplary student that has made the most of his high school education.

Connections Homeschool

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District www.KPBSD.org

News Release: State funding set for public education

State funding set for public education

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Soldotna, June 23, 2017—The Alaska State Legislature adopted a budget which includes Status Quo K-12 education Base Student Allocation (BSA) funding for the 2017-2018 school year. Superintendent Sean Dusek said:

“Now that the legislature has come to a budget agreement for K-12 funding, we are able to move forward to prepare for the new school year beginning August 22, 2017. We will fill open teaching positions as best we can, and hope to have a full staffing recommendation for the school board to consider soon. We thank and appreciate the efforts of our legislators and local leaders in this process. We thank our staff, families, and community members who invested time and effort to learn about education revenue and expenditures, as well as advocate to the legislature and borough on behalf of our excellent schools in the KPBSD.

It is our hope that future funding for K-12 education will be decided much earlier in the process to avoid the uncertainty of programs and opportunities for our students experienced during these past several months. We will continue to work with the legislature to fulfill the goal of a sustainable, responsible, long-term fiscal plan that will allow Alaska to continue to be a vibrant and attractive state in which to live.”

HB57 is awaiting transmission to the Governor, and the next step in the legislative process is for the Governor to sign and adopt the budget.


Kenai Peninsula Borough School District
Contact: Pegge Erkeneff, Communications Liaison, 907.714.8888, communications @ KPBSD.org



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