PHS val, sal: No rivalry, best friends always

Published 12:01 am Thursday, May 24, 2012


If one were to pen a motto for Pleasant Home School’s valedictorian Melanie Lloyd and salutatorian Kendra Bryan, it would go something like this – “Friends until the end.”

Lloyd is the daughter of R.D. and Tara Lloyd. She earned her valedictorian status with a 3.96 GPA. Bryan is the daughter of Lisa Smith and earned a GPA of 3.93.

Bryan and Lloyd became best friends at the start of their high school career.

Lloyd said there was never any “rivalry” between the two young women. Instead, each supported and pushed each other to do their best. Bryan agreed.

“We always competed to make better grades than each other,” Bryan said. “But as you can tell, she beat me by three-hundredths of a point. I usually push myself. I always studied. My mom was a big help because she would always help, no matter what she was doing when I asked.”

Lloyd also credited her academic success to her parents.

“I know without any doubt that I wouldn’t be the valedictorian if it wasn’t for the support of my parents,” she said. “They have always pushed me to do my very best and always made sure I put school first.

“When I started the seventh grade I knew then that I wanted to be the valedictorian,” she said. “I pushed myself every year to achieve that goal, and it was such a relief and honor when it was announced that all that hard work had paid off.”

The “hard work” has paid off for both students – earning each a host of academic scholarships and high school honors.

Lloyd was awarded the B. H. “Tubby” Hall academic excellence award each year in high school; was an honor graduate; Beta Club secretary then vice president; a member of the language arts team and FCCLA secretary.

She said she plans to attend Troy University in the fall, to pursue a bachelor’s degree in rehabilitation before transferring to the University of Alabama at Birmingham to earn a master’s degree in occupational therapy.

“About five years ago, I met this guy that was mentally challenged and after making a bond with him, I knew that I wanted to work with special needs children,” she said. “I have helped in the special ed department at Pleasant Home and observed an occupational therapist, and I know that being an occupational therapist is my calling.”

Bryan said she also plans to attend Troy University in the fall to pursue a degree in criminal justice.

“I want to be an FBI agent,” she said of her career aspirations. “I’ve always respected cops, and I’ve always wanted to do something along those lines ever since I can remember.”

The two, along with their fellow classmates at Pleasant Home School, will receive their diplomas tonight at 8.