BELLAIRE, Texas — Outstanding is an understatement to describe what's going on at Bellaire High School.
A record nine BHS seniors with perfect 5.0 GPAs have been named valedictorians.
These are the students and the colleges they plan to attend:
- Alkiviades Boukas -- University of Texas
- Daniel Chen -- Carnegie Mellon University
- Evie Tsen-Ying Kao -- University of Texas
- Angela Ling -- Undecided
- Miles Mackenzie -- University of Texas
- Wenson Tsiah-Hao Tang -- Carnegie Mellon University
- Christopher Zhou -- Rice University
- Annie Zhu -- Stanford
- Shirley Zhu -- Undecided
“I think a big part of school is just being able to explore interests – so I’ve just really enjoyed taking all of my classes and pushing myself to do the best of my ability," Annie Zhu said.
Her twin sister Shirley is also a BHS valedictorian who advises students to embrace their learning experience.
“Take joy in learning! There will be challenges, but challenges are what make something rewarding in the end,” she said. “Put the time, effort, and energy into classes, but also explore your interests with different clubs and please prioritize your mental health. When you start to have tunnel vision … take a step back and take a breather.”
The students' achievement is even more remarkable considering the challenges of online learning during the pandemic.
“Just like not being able to see all your other classmates makes it feel like you aren’t really in class – so having that discipline was definitely more important this year," Annie said.
The Zhu sisters have been in the news before after co-founding a non-profit called Fresh-Hub.
It works to redistribute unsold food to Houston area food deserts where fresh produce and other items are not readily available.
“And that’s something that’s going to continue on after we leave Bellaire High School with juniors taking the lead," Shirley said.
“These students are inspiring examples of what can be achieved through dedication and hard work,” HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan said. “I am incredibly proud of all of them for this milestone achievement and know that they are also actively involved at Bellaire High School."
Bellaire High School Principal Michael McDonough said he knew when these students entered campus as freshmen that the Class of 2021 would be something special.
“I began to consider the idea of two to three valedictorians, but I never imagined nine” McDonough said. “These students are also involved in after-school activities and leaders in various organizations. To juggle their schoolwork and extracurriculars, then throw in a pandemic and virtual learning, and still maintain a 5.0 GPA. It is nothing short of amazing. I could not be prouder of them.”
The nine seniors will join other HISD valedictorians and salutatorians at the annual Scholars Recognition Ceremony on April 13 at Delmar Stadium. The ceremony will begin at 7 p.m.
Bellaire High School's graduation is scheduled for June 13 at 8 p.m. at Delmar Stadium.
ALSO POPULAR ON KHOU.COM