Andalusia Chamber recognizes Ava Tomberlin as Student of the Year at annual banquet

Published 2:45 pm Saturday, February 10, 2024

The Andalusia Area Chamber of Commerce’s 2023-2024 Student of the Year is Andalusia High School senior Ava Tomberlin.

Ava is among the top students in her class while also participating in several extracurricular activities and serving the community through volunteer efforts.

“Being named Student of the Year by the Andalusia Area Chamber of Commerce holds significant meaning for me. This recognition signifies my commitment and dedication to both academic and personal development. Being a student is my job currently and getting this award validates I am doing my job well. I would like to express my sincere thanks to the Andalusia Area Chamber of Commerce for this honor,” Tomberlin said.

At Andalusia, Ava has a 4.2708 grade point average and is top of her class. She serves as class president, vice president of the Student Government Association and Covington County Youth Leadership Program, National Honor Society president, Key Club secretary and vice president, Subdeb secretary, cross country captain, Girls’ State Federalist Party chairman, and is on the Principal’s Student Advisory committee.

She received the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Award, finished as first alternate in both Distinguished Young Women of Covington County and the Alabama Rural Electric Association Youth Tour’s contest, and obtained the highest average in English Composition and Honors English 10. She is a City of Andalusia ambassador, the present homecoming queen, and a Meredith’s Miracles junior director. Ava was also recognized as student of the month her junior year.

“I have always been incredibly thankful for my education and believe your education is one thing no one can take from you. God has blessed my class at Andalusia High School with extremely capable minds, and being selected to receive this award feels my heart with gratitude. Andalusia High School has equipped me with all of the necessary resources moving forward to a post-secondary institution. The dedicated teachers and staff contribute to a positive atmosphere that fosters intellectual curiosity and a passion for learning. Without Andalusia High School, I would definitely not be the student I am today,” she said.

Ava’s extracurricular activities involve serving as a majorette in the ‘A Sound Tradition’ Marching Band, cross country and junior varsity volleyball, Usher Club, Spanish Club, Student Government Association, Peer Helpers, and Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Her community activities include volunteering at Meredith’s Miracles’ Cookies with Characters, Special Adventures Workday, Usher Club projects, City of Andalusia Ambassador volunteer work, Peer Help projects, helping at the Kiwanis Covington County Fair, and contributing to Alabama’s Adopt-a-Mile cleanup.

“Moving forward, I will always be thankful for this honor. I pray I am always appreciative and humble for the incredible opportunities set before me. Abraham Lincoln once said, ‘Don’t worthy when you are not recognized, but strive to be worthy of recognition.’ This award reminds me of this quote, and I will continue to put my best foot forward because I am working for the Lord and not for men,” Tomberlin said.

Ava believes community service and involvement create a well-rounded student.

“Learning how to give back makes one appreciate the help they are given along the way. Giving back to a community that has given so much to me feels me with such pride. The city also promotes involvement in several aspects. Community service grounds a person and helps him/her realize the difference he/she could make. Involvement promotes the feeling of inclusiveness. Community service and involvement are two ways to be apart of the betterment of one’s community,” she said.

She plans to further her education at Auburn University and pursue an undergraduate degree in Pre-Dentistry Studies. From there, she has aspirations of attending the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s dental school for Dentistry. Her post-graduation plan is to return to Andalusia and establish her own dental practice.

“Ava has shown tremendous leadership qualities throughout her high school career. She is a student that exemplifies leadership inside and out and has led several different programs here at Andalusia High School. Even though all of these qualities would be enough on her resume, the thing that cannot be measured or written on a resume is her forever smile she exhibits every day and how she treats each and every student at AHS with respect no matter their background or culture,” Principal Ray Wilson said.

Ava is the daughter of John and Krystal Tomberlin.