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School District's Back-2-School Festival Returns Monday, July 15, 2024
Michael Rosier
2024 ECSD Back-2-School Festival

The Edgefield County School District's annual Back-2-School Festival will return on Monday, July 15, 2024, ahead of the start of the 2024-25 school year on Monday, July 22, 2024. 

The event will be held at Strom Thurmond High School (front entrance) from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

We hope all ECSD families are able to join us for fun, food and free supply giveaways ahead of the new school year.

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LIV Golf Smash for Success Scholarship Recipient Isaac Westbrook
Michael Rosier
STHS Golfer Isaac Westbrook with LIV Golf Tour members

By LIV Golf/Smash GC

In the world of junior golf, a new star is rising, and his name is Isaac Westbrook.

Smash GC and their community-focused initiative, Smash for Success, have announced Isaac as the recipient of the 2024 Smash for Success scholarship.

This prestigious award comes after an intense selection process evaluated by a panel of notable judges, including Smash GC members Brooks Koepka, Talor Gooch, Graeme McDowell, and Jason Kokrak.

Isaac Westbrook, a senior at Strom Thurmond High School in Edgefield, South Carolina, has distinguished himself not only through his impressive academic achievements but also through his dedication to the core values of integrity, discipline, and respect.

With a remarkable 4.6 GPA and a significant role on the school’s golf team, Westbrook is a shining example of what the Smash for Success program aims to support and develop.

This fall, he will take his talents to Clemson University, majoring in business with aspirations of becoming a financial advisor.

“Golf is more than just a game; it’s a platform for personal and professional growth,” remarked Brooks Koepka, Smash GC Captain. “Isaac Westbrook exemplifies the spirit and values of the Smash for Success program, and we are proud to support him in his academic journey.”

The scholarship isn’t just a financial award; it’s an experience designed to inspire and motivate.

As part of the program, Isaac Westbrook was treated to a VIP experience at the LIV Golf Houston event from June 7-9.

There, he had the extraordinary opportunity to play in the pro-am alongside Talor Gooch and spend time with the entire Smash GC team.

This unique exposure will allow him to gain invaluable insights and advice from seasoned professionals.

Isaac’s parents were also part of the celebration, sharing in their son’s remarkable achievements and experiencing the tournament’s excitement firsthand.

Isaac, and his parents were flown to LIV Golf Houston to enjoy the tournament with the ultimate VIP experience where he played in the pro-am alongside Smash GC member Talor Gooch and had a special moment on the first tee before the Shotgun Start on day one.

“It’s just incredible when someone does something for your child, it just speaks to your heart. He loves golf, he’s always loved golf, so for this to happen is just a dream come true,” stated Christi Westbrook, Isaac’s mother.

“It’s unbelievable. When he put in for it, we had no idea that he would even have a chance to get it. We’re very blessed and very appreciative. Everybody has been so wonderful and I’m just so happy for him that he got to experience this today,” added Mac Westbrook, Isaac’s father.

In addition to this once-in-a-lifetime experience, the scholarship will significantly contribute to Westbrook’s tuition and educational expenses at Clemson.

As the inaugural recipient of the Smash for Success Scholarship, Isaac is expected to return to a LIV Golf tournament next season to share his experiences and insights from his first year at Clemson University, thereby inspiring the next wave of scholarship recipients.

Isaac’s story is not just one of personal achievement but also a testament to the power of golf in shaping future leaders.

Smash GC’s commitment to fostering young talent through initiatives like Smash for Success demonstrates the sport’s profound impact beyond the greens.

For all the latest news and updates, stay up to par with Smash GC at smashgc.com.

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Class of 2024 Hat Toss at STHS Stadium
Michael Rosier
Class of 2024 Hat Toss at STHS Stadium

Johnston, SC – The final walk of the Strom Thurmond High School (STHS) graduating Class of 2024 – 169 seniors strong – marked a huge milestone in their lives in transitioning on Friday, May 31, 2024, from high school students to alumni.

Friday’s commencement ceremony, the sixty-third annual high school graduation for Strom Thurmond High School, was held at STHS Stadium under sunny skies before a large and enthusiastic crowd of family members and friends.

Members of the Class of 2024 received a total of $8.7 million dollars in scholarship offers from colleges and universities, which is more than double the total of graduate scholarships from previous school years.

The STHS Class of 2024 was led by Valedictorian, Drew Sloan (5.508 Grade Point Average), and Salutatorian, Selina Li (5.408 Grade Point Average). Drew will attend Princeton University in the fall and plan to major in Biology, while Selina will attend the University of South Carolina Columbia and also major in Biology.

Honor graduates included Madison Anderson, Joseph Brooks, Javon Chick, Lillian Cockrell, Cody Davenport, Dawson Kulp, Aubrey Langford, Selina Li, Hailey Lyle, Whitt Miller, Luigi Palma Garcia, Zoey Rhoden, Kiersten Skinner, Isaac Westbrook, Erin Williams, Katie Willis, Herman Yonce and LaDelle Yonce.

Alpha Awards were presented by Edgefield County Board of Education chairperson Mrs. Robin Ball to the three STHS graduates with the highest scores on the SAT. Alpha Awards were awarded to Elizabeth Holmes, Katie Willis and LaDelle Yonce. Strom Thurmond Scholarships, provided each year for STHS graduates of distinction as established by legendary former U.S. Senator and Edgefield County School District (ECSD) educator, Strom Thurmond, were presented by Strom Thurmond High School assistant principal Crystal Hadden to graduates Toboris Simpkins, Aliese Upson and Katie Willis.

Four members of the Class of 2024 have chosen military service after high school. They include graduates Tyrone Brown, Clifford Jolly, Makhaiya Lovett and Mason Toothman.

Strom Thurmond High School Student Body President, Shenique Muldrow, welcomed guests to the commencement.

Opening remarks were provided by honor graduate Katie Willis, prior to the welcoming of distinguished guests by ECSD Superintendent, Dr. Kevin O’Gorman. Strom Thurmond High School Principal, Mrs. Fran Altringer, offered a salute to the graduating Class of 2024 and recognized STHS faculty members for their tremendous contributions to the success of Friday’s graduates.

Strom Thurmond Career and Technology Center Director, Dr. Alan Gray, also recognized the similarly outstanding contributions of STCTC faculty members.

Members of the Class of 2024 included the following graduates:

Tre’von Skyler Abney, Alyson Nicole Agner, Sandra Agustin Chavez, Jace Lowen Anderson, Madison Faith Anderson, Mayeli Adamaris Andrade Velasquez, Selin Elizabeth Anmac, Mattison Kayla Ayers, Alexia Venique Backmon, Lacey Charmelle Backmon, Christopher Issac Barnes, J’niya Leasha Barnes, Keon Divine Rasheed Batson, Erick Ignacio Bautista Reyes, Ansley Christian Berry, Mark Kelly Bishop, Jordan Clifton Bizzle, Hayden Edward Bledsoe, Michael Craig Blocker, Jaci Faye Brooks, Joseph Dean Brooks, Hyneka Lashay Brown, Hyneka Lashay Brown, Tyrone Lamont Brown, Faith Lynn Bruenning, Cassidy Salonia Brunson, Brianna Grace Bryan, Raymond Christopher Burge Jr., William Henry Burke, Chasity Faith Butler, Andrew Taiwan Byrd Jr., James Qiang Caddell, Anthony Passafiume Carson, Hannah Brooke Chandler, Isaiah Jacquari Chavous Jr., Angel San-Tressa Cheatham, Jaden Pierre Trey’Shaun Cheatham, Javon Josiah Chick, Alana Shayla Chinn, Katlyn Uriyah Chinn IV, Eric Clark, Elaina Nichole Clarke, Tre’shawn Jermaine Clarke, Lillian Catherine Cockrell, Madison Leigh Cockrell, Braeden James Coleman, Tristian I’Asia Coleman, Mehki Nasir Coping, Cody Nathaniel Davenport, Shamiyah Tamire Shemeka Dawson, Nicholas Blake Dobbs, Natalie Alana Dolph, Christine Lilyan Doyle, Tatyiana Alexis Nechelle Dukes, Hannah Jane Dyches, Addison Linnea Edgin, Latronzo Jaquan Edmond, Mason Darnell Etheredge, Harley Cole Field, Tara Ashlynn Gantt, Bless Abby Gilchrist, Haley Gilliam, Kyla Deja’Nique Gilliam, Gerard Tyrone Glanton, Evan Lee Glascoe, Zachary William Godfrey, Brent Marcus Graham, Peyton Lynn Gregory, Justus Dillon Hammett, Ciara Renee Hartley, Christian Antonio Hazel, Aubreanna Danielle Henderson, Darrian LaSteven Hendrix, Bryson Thomas Hensley, Weston Mack Herlong, Tristan Dakoda Herring, Ethan Matthew Herron, Breylie Shaye Hodson, Corey Thomas Holmes, Elizabeth Gracelyn Holmes, Demarius Jovan Jeffery-Tolen, Bronson Waylon Jenkins, Jessica Isabella Johnson, Clifford Thomas Jolly, Aniya Shantavious Jones, Carson Edward Jones, Ryderious Jamir Jones, Shakyla Jones, Tyderious Amir Jones, Savannah Brooke Kelly, Kaylynn Hope Knight, Dawson James Kulp, Aubrey Christina Langford, Samani Janai Lanham, Jordyn D’Andre Lee, Mor’kavious Lyntrez Lee, Mya Grace Lewis, Selina Li, Makhaiya Eriana Lovett, Jenna Marie Lucas, Joseph Logan Luther, Hailey Jo-Ann Lyle, Taylor Bree Lyons, Zi’Keiah Armoni Mack, Eric Tyrick Martin, Ja Quan Malik Mathis, Terrell Jarvis Mathis, Elijah Avery McBride, Shaniya Kilaysha McKinney, Torrence Malik McNeal, A’niyah Kamille Merritt, Warren Tillman Miller, Whitt Thomas Miller, Shenique Monee Muldrow, Chloe Reann Nelson, Zander Cade Nelson, Shenique Monee Muldrow, Chloe Reann Nelson, Zander Cade Nelson, Nathan James Nordeen, Adrehna Nitara Paige, Yamilee Palma Cervantes, Luigi Oswaldo Palma Garcia, Julissa Palma, Fire Curtis Chubbuck Parker, Gavin Austin Poole III, Flossie Posey, Paige La’Mia Pride, Wenyetta Titianna Lizzetta Ramsey, My’Cavious Jamori Rauch, Zoey Mackenzie Rhoden, JeNajah Danae Rhynes, Anslee Rebecca Riley, Rocio Montserrat Romero Flores, Makayla Denise Rushton, Mayanna Elizabeth Salloum, Ciara Elizabeth Samuels, Jeremiah Isaiah Satterwhite, Mavis Reeves Seigler, Valerie Sa’Maya Shuman, Darius Jamal Simpkins, Shaude Samya Simpkins, Toboris Zyon Simpkins, Kiersten Elise Skinner, Drew Kelly Sloan, Bianca Aniyah Smith, Christian Allen Smith, Halynn Sydney Smith, James Gamewell Smith, Lasia Takiyah Smith, Marcus Dee Smith, Destiny Renee Snodgrass, Braylon Thoms Staley, Jamaris DeAndre’ Stevens, Nathan Jermaine Stevens, Catelyn Ny’shayla Stringer, Julissa Cymor’e Strobridge, Madison Pressley Strom, Kiersten Nichelle Tabb, Chase Jackson Thomas, Mason Cole Toothman, Kaitlyn Annmarie Townsend, Aliese Sinceray Upson, Isaiah Sanquon Wakefield, Krystal Nicole Waldo, Destiny Symone Walker, Roosevelt Walker, Isaac Hayne Westbrook, Erin Mariah Williams, Ikira Janea Williams, Rushon Omarian Williams, Katie Morgan Willis, Rachel McKenzie Wilson, Mollie Danielle Wise, Jada Rayne Wright, Jonathan Malcolm Wyndham, Samantha Sally Wyndham, Herman Daniel Yonce IV., LaDelle Colleen Yonce and Logan Phillip Yonce.

Junior Marshals for the ceremony included Ma'Kayla Addy (Head Marshall), Mina Allen, Landon Bayorek, Hartley Byrd, Riley Brightharp, Reagan Clark, Daley Hitt, Emily McKie, Sara Beth McKie, Hannah Mims, Addison Stevens (Head Marshall) and Jenasys Washington.

Strom Thurmond High School senior class president, Tristian Coleman, led the turning of the tassels, and honor graduate LaDelle Yonce delivered the closing remarks.

The National Anthem and the Strom Thurmond High School alma mater were performed by graduate Jessica Johnson.

The commencement ceremony was directed and produced by Strom Thurmond Theatre director, Mr. Steven McKinney. The Class of 2024 graduation livestream was filmed and produced by members of the Edgefield County School District’s Technology Department.

Strom Thurmond High School Stadium was prepared and set up for graduation by members of the ECSD Facilities and Maintenance Department.

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Class of 2024 Senior Tristian Coleman
Michael Rosier
Class of 2024 Senior Tristian Coleman

Parents: Ericia Coleman

Accolades and Achievements: Strom Thurmond High School Class of 2024, Class President; 2023-24 STHS Scholar Engineering Award, A/B Honors; Achievement in BLS(CPR) CPCT (Certified Patient Care Technician), OSHA 10, Engineering, Sports Medicine, Health Science; Member of Student Council (Class President), HOSA.

College/Career Plans: Tristian will attend Newberry College and Major in Nursing.

Summer Plans: My plan is to have fun with friends and family before going off to college.

Memorable Moment(s) at STHS: “Every Friday morning I would go on the morning announcements with full energy because it would be the end of the week and Friday night football games. I loved coming to every football game and literally losing my voice cheering on our Rebels as they take on any team. Those are always memorable.”

Advice to Rising Seniors: “Don’t be afraid of being afraid, it’s ok. Enjoy every moment of your senior year because it will go by fast. Apply to colleges and scholarships ahead of time, NEVER wait until the last minute and always check your email the exact same way you check your phone for text message.”

Who Has Inspired you? “Growing up as the oldest of four children my mother inspired me tremendously. Watching her as a single parent working hard and taking care of me and my siblings impacted me and helped me grow into the young woman I am today. Her advice to me is, ‘keep going baby girl, you will always achieve anything you put your mind to’ and I love her for that.”

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Class of 2024 Senior Erin Williams
Michael Rosier
Class of 2024 Senior Erin Williams

Parents: Ericka and Randall Williams.

Accolades and Achievements: Strom Thurmond High School Class of 2024, Class Rank (6); Grade Point Average 5.028; Junior Marshall (2023 Graduation); Palmetto Fellows Scholar (2023-24); Member of: DECA, National Beta Club (Vice President), Varsity Soccer Team (Captain), High School A Honor Roll (2020-present), National African American Recognition through College Board, Junior Scholar (recognized by Presbyterian college and USC Upstate), Academic Honoree by The Links Foundation.

College/Career Plans: Erin Williams will attend The University of Tennessee (Knoxville), and major in aerospace engineering.

Summer Plans: In June, Erin will attend an advanced summer engineering program in Knoxville. After the program, she will travel and visit family before starting college.

Memorable Moment(s) at STHS: “I remember, it was in my junior year, towards the end of the football season. My friend and I had never been to a high school football game until we impulsively decided to go. I think it was the second to last game before playoffs. We both had so much fun in the student section even though we both knew nothing about football. After that night, we went to many more together.”

Advice to Rising Seniors: “Get used to new things. There have been more times than I can count where I have tried new events or programs. Sometimes it’s uncomfortable when you are new, but the more you stand out, the more others are open to connect with you. There will be situations where you may not be with your friends, or may be uncomfortable not knowing anyone, but you can establish new relationships and be more comfortable meeting new people and trying new things.”

What Has Inspired you? “My favorite genre of books has always been historical fiction and non-fiction. I loved the idea that inspiring themes in books could also happen in real life. However, I didn’t get into (theatre) until I was a junior at Strom Thurmond. We had a literature class where we read a book of our choice, and I chose ‘A Raisin in the Sun’ by Loraine Hansberry. After researching her journey, I was inspired by her resilience, being one of the few women to succeed in the literary world.”

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