Fuquay-Varina High School’s valedictorian and salutatorian have a similarity that stretches beyond grade point average. They both said that their families had a hand in achieving their positions atop the class of 2012.
Raleigh-born valedictorian Allison Clark, 18, said that the encouragement of her parents, Warren and Roberta Clark, was the biggest factor in her high school success.
“They always pushed me to just do my best at everything,” Clark said.
Fuquay native Aaron Lympany, 17, said he achieved salutatorian status by “pretty much just studying hard,” but also with help from a family member.
“My brother Shane helped me a lot because we had this sibling rivalry,” Lympany said, especially crediting his brother’s math skills as a big assist.
Both students have big plans for their futures.
Clark said she originally planned to attend medical school, but changed her mind after taking an anatomy class in high school and disliking the more graphic aspects of medical work. However, she still wanted to pursue a career in the industry.
“I became interested in the medical field because I really enjoy math and science and want to use my gifts to help others,” she said.
A shadowing experience also kept her passion for the industry intact.
“I shadowed a breast cancer researcher last summer at UNC, and she really inspired me to continue in the medical field,” Clark said.
Clark will now attend UNC Chapel Hill to study biomedical engineering. She said her goal is to get a Master’s degree in that field.
“Hopefully, I’ll be able to help someone with that,” Clark said.
Lympany will attend Virginia Tech University on an Army ROTC scholarship, where he will work towards a communications degree.
“I want to do something with film,” he said.
Lympany also plans to join the Corps of Cadets, which he described as “a compromise between a service academy and a regular ROTC program.”
Lympany said that Army ROTC “is the perfect way” for him to fulfill the “Be all that you can be” slogan that he has taken to heart, as well as help him achieve his post-graduation goals in the military.
“I want to serve my country and help those less fortunate than me abroad, and I think my leadership skills and determination will help me to be a very successful army officer, enabling me to accomplish those goals,” he said.
Despite the excitement of graduation, Clark and Lympany were sad to leave their favorite parts of high school behind.
Clark said her favorite part of high school was Late Arrival Tuesdays, which gave students an extra hour off every week. Clark also said she will miss her friends the most.
“We’re all going our separate way in the fall,” she said.
Lympany said he will miss the student cheering section at sports games.
“We have a really good community with the Orange Crush. That was a really big thing,” he said.