#2 Valedictorian - Leah Rone Krueger

Valedictorian - Leah Rone Krueger

Next Steps: Hendrix College

Field of Studies: Political Science

🔴 What advice you would give your freshman self? The advice I would give to my freshman self would be to be kind to yourself. The intensity and pressure that I put on myself were what I thought was needed to be successful when really it was an unnecessary emotional weight I put upon myself. Try your best, because your best is enough.

🔴 What has this journey taught you about yourself? This journey has taught me to be grateful for my school and the incredible resources and opportunities we have. I am glad I had the privilege and ability to take advantage of what CPS had to offer. It means a great deal. I am a reflection of those around me: my teachers, memoirs, friends, and family. Without them, this accomplishment would have not been possible, so I a proud to represent the Class of 2022 and to those around me who have given their support and love.

🔴 Looking back on your school experience at CPS what does being a Zebra mean to you? Looking back on my school experience at CPS, being a Zebra means being a part of a community that welcoming and kind. The person I am today reflects on what it means to be a Zebra.

🔴 What staff member made the biggest impact on your life and how in elementary school? The CPS elementary staff member that has made the biggest impact on my life would be Mrs. Eckert, my second grade teacher at Westside Elementary. She took the time to help tutor me to challenge my academics beyond school hours.

🔴 What staff member made the biggest impact on your life and how in junior high? The CPS Will Rogers Junior High staff member that has made the biggest impact on my life would be Mrs. Braucher, my sixth/seventh grade Geography teacher. This course truly prepared my younger self for the future curriculum at the high school. I learned how to think critically and how to study at a young age, a skill crucial for school.

🔴 What staff member made the biggest impact on your life and how in high school?  The CPS Claremore High School staff member that has made the biggest impact on my life would be Mr. Cummings, my Pre-AP & AP United States History teacher and Academic Team Coach. With every minute I have spent in his classroom, there has not been one where I was not learning something. My time in these classes has not just given me knowledge but has enlightened me.

🔴 What is the ONE thing you absolutely take with you to college? The one thing I would absolutely take with me to college would be coffee.

🔴 What activities you have been involved in? Academic Team, Athletics, Class Officer, FUZE, Math Club/Mu Alpha Theta, National Honor Society, SADD, Spirit Squad, Student Council, Young Democrats, and ZUAC

🔴 What was the hardest part (challenges) you had to overcome to achieve this honor? The hardest challenge was navigating the pandemic. In part of the fall semester of my junior year, I volunteered to stay home due to concerns about my health. Doing my work virtually was definitely a challenge, as I had to learn the course in a different format. For a while, I felt disconnected from my life. However, I started to integrate myself back into school and when I came back, I felt like a student and peer again. This has definitely put my life in perspective.

🔴 What are you most proud of in your high school career? I am most proud of this, being a Valedictorian. This achievement was an aspiration of mine since the beginning of my high school career. The academic path to get here has made me a more informed, enlightened, and motivated individual. I will also have the honor of addressing my class at graduation, a moment where we will all be together one last time. I am also proud of my extracurricular involvement, which has been a big part of my high school career. The wonderful memories I have is because of what Claremore High School had to offer.

🔴 Awards / Honors / Scholarships

Scholarships:  Recipient of the George Nigh Scholarship presented at American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) Oklahoma Girls State ($250); Claremore Alumni Scholarship ($1,000); Bluejacket Memorial Scholarship ($1,500); Hendrix College Academic Merit Scholarship ($100,000) 

Awards:  Z-Awards in AP European History and Geography; Oklahoma High School Honor Society Member since Freshman year; AP Scholar Award (scoring 3 or higher on three or more AP Exams)