Departmental Awards

These are the awards we were hoping to recognize in April at the Senior Awards Night:

Senior Departmental Awards

The following seniors were selected by the departmental faculty at Washington High School as the student who best demonstrated outstanding work and/or ability in each subject area.

Art - Joette Brinker
Joette-- This year has been anything but normal. In previous years the art department picks a student to honor. This student has always been an example of what we are looking for in a student, hard working, creative, kind, and generous. Unfortunately the ceremony has been canceled. Nevertheless we would like to honor you this year! You are a great artist, I can not say it enough. You are one of the most creative students I have ever had. Please continue your artistic pursuits. I know you have been on the fence about college/art school but you will truly shine there. You will find that place where you belong. A place where you will be challenged and inspired. I will miss you next year. Thanks for being who you are.
--Ryan Snider

It didn't take me long to realize what a great eye you have for light and composition. Within the first few clicks of that camera, I knew you had a gift. However, the gifts you have go beyond what you can make or create in an art class. Your kindness and empathy certainly place you in a whole different chapter in my book. I know that life right now may not seem "ideal" on many levels, but I am certain you can rise above it all. And, in doing so, you will lift other people with you simply by being the kind person I have come to respect greatly. Thank you for being YOU. Thank you for caring. Thank you for making my days brighter! I hope to hear from you in the future.
Stay in touch,
~ M. Turner

It has been such a pleasure to have you in my classes over the past few years. I've been able to witness such an amazing amount of growth and transformation in you during this time. I am truly in awe of your talent, your creative instinct and your quiet strength and leadership. I will always be honored to have been your "art mom"! Wishing you the best of everything in your life beyond high school. I can't wait to see where you land!
Be still. Be strong. Be happy. :)

~ Ms. Schuster


Business - Kelly Mahnesmith
This year we are presenting our Business Department award to a young lady who has excelled the past two years in the Business Department at Washington High School. During her junior year, she became involved in DECA through Marketing and qualified for state in Accounting. This year she continued her involvement in Marketing and DECA by serving as DECA Co-President. She took charge of planning meetings, events and fundraisers. Kelly and her partner led the way with a community service project for Franklin County Humane Society that qualified for state. In addition to her outstanding work in the classroom, she is a kind, conscientious young lady. We are pleased to present our 2019-2020 Business Department Award to Kelly Mahnesmtih.
--Kim Minnich & Katelyn Huber


English - Elizabeth Derner
On behalf of the entire Washington High School English Language Arts Department, I want to congratulate you on being chosen as the outstanding English student from WHS for the 2019-2020 school year. Your devotion to the study of reading and writing these past four years has been marvelous, and you should be incredibly proud of all the things you have accomplished and learned. You have taken all of the highest level elective classes we offer and were spectacular in each. Your work on the Advocate has also been superb. I am honored to have taught you in three classes during your high school career and want you to know I have enjoyed every second of learning with and beside you. Your determination to completely understand the texts or ideas we discuss in class has challenged me to become a better teacher and thinker. I can not imagine having another student ever get as excited about cumulative sentences. I will always cherish the little notes with your drawings, including the scroll of thanks and the highly coveted Garbanzo Award. And any time I need someone or something found, I know the first call I will make: Custom Stalks. We know that you will continue to learn and grow throughout your academic career. Please keep us all informed about your progress and know that we will always be available to assist you on your way.
--Colin Flynn & the WHS English Department


English Language Learners - Debora Rusu

It is my pleasure to give the ELL department award to Ms. Debora Rusu. I first met Debora this year in my English Language Learners class at Washington High School, where I saw her every day. I was quickly impressed with her friendliness and her compassionate nature toward other students. She came to class every day with an attitude of open-mindedness and optimism. Her willing approach to learning and her good-natured disposition were a positive influence on the class and me! I learned that Debora is someone who has the ability to overcome any obstacle, be it personal or academic, through persistence, faith, and positivity. She is also someone who knows the power of gratitude, and never fails to express it to her teachers.
Debora is someone who has faced the challenges of two cultures and two languages in an exceptional way. She is someone who is serious about her future and her academic success. Debora aims to be the first person in her family to receive a Bachelor's Degree. I have no doubt that she will do this, as she has continued to demonstrate a determination to meet her goals. Her strong faith in God and devotion to her family have created a focused desire to work hard, so that she may help others. I know she will do this, and I wish Debora the very best. Thank you, Debora, for being you!
--Anne Stahl


Family and Consumer Science - Autumn Dalgetty
I think you know that I believe in you! You have worked hard and have overcome so much. You are one of the wisest, sweetest, most forgiving students I have ever had. You by nature help others out more than yourself. If there is one thing I want for you to practice it is putting yourself first. You deserve it! I hope you have learned while in high school what I have learned from having you as a student the past two years:
Believe in yourself.......you are worth it!
Don't give up....... Don't give up........ Don't give up!
Ask for help........ there is nothing wrong with asking for help in life!
Work hard......... it will pay off...... You have so earned this diploma and so much more!
Practice forgiveness (even if it is self-forgiveness) along with standing up for yourself!
You are a shining star!
You may be graduating from high school but you will always be one of my children!
--Kristen Perriman


Industrial Arts - Wyatt Seiter-Pillow, nominated by Jesse Anderson


Math - Elise Theirbach

This senior class has many students who have demonstrated excellent mathematical skills. This made it difficult to select just one. But with further analysis, one student rose to the top of her class. I am pleased to announce that the Math Department Award goes to Elise Thierbach. This recipient has a 4.0 average in her math courses, achieved above a 30 on the math section of the ACT and is the top student in AP Calculus. Elise Thierbach was an outstanding competitor at ACES, Missouri Math League and the Excellence in Mathematics Competitions. Not only should she be proud of her accomplishments in these competitions, but also her accomplishments as the Mu Alpha Theta President. Elise is an outstanding student and exhibits strong leadership qualities which will make her a highly effective mathematics teacher! Congratulations Elise! Good luck in your future endeavors!
--Melissa Mauchenheimer


Music - Chloe Weiss

Chloe Weiss has been an integral member of both the Washington High School Orchestra and Band programs. As a member of the orchestra, she has served as a principal player for two years, and every day she demonstrated true leadership to her classmates. Chloe’s preparedness and compassion has built up the members of her section, and unified them into powerhouse performers. Chloe can always be relied on to be prepared for class and bring a smile each and every day. Chloe has also stepped in for Dr. Thierbach and Mrs. Brueggemann in their absence, and she does it with confidence. As Drum Major in the band, Chloe has exhibited leadership by example. She brought her leadership beyond marching band, into concert band and pep band. Chloe is an invaluable member of the Washington Band. Chloe will be truly missed in both Orchestra and Band, but we know that she will be an outstanding music teacher in the future.
--Jacob Bisaillon


No Excuses - Christian Wheeler
No Excuses is nominating a student who has been with us for all four years of their high school career. This student was the model of what a No Excuses student should be. Their grades, attendance, work ethic and character were second to none. Every day this student quietly came in, worked hard, trusted the process and was an excellent role model for other students. We look forward to hearing what successes lie ahead for this young man. For these reasons we nominate Christian Wheeler.
--Timothy Branson


Physical Education - Joe Hackmann
Joe has left a legacy here at Washington of hard work and determination. He is the example of Blue Jay Pride. In Advanced Weight Training Joe would show up early and stay late to get everything done that he wanted to accomplish so he could be a better student athlete.
When Joe was a sophomore he mentioned how he wanted to change the culture of our school and our athletic programs. He wanted to set the example for others to follow in the classroom, weight room and athletic fields. Joe is a family first young man. During our conversation about how to change the culture, Joe also mentioned how he wanted to do this for his siblings. He wanted the culture to look different for them.
Joe has tremendous character. He looks out for others and wants nothing but the best for his classmates, teammates and friends. Joe is a leader who not only leads by example but will also lead vocally as well when needed. He is a great young man with a great work ethic and has a lot to offer the world we live in today.
--Matt Kroeter


Science - Tristan Zeh
This year the science department is nominating a senior who has shown excellence in science courses all four years of high school. This student took both AP Chemistry and AP Physics. He is described by his AP Physics teacher, Mrs. Midkiff, as exceptionally hard-working. She states that he challenges himself and shows excellent leadership by helping his fellow classmates before and after school. Mrs. Midkiff states that this student is never afraid to ask for assistance to better his understanding of the subject. Mrs. Fecke, his AP Chemistry teacher, knows this student to be the model of a life-long learner. This student has also participated in track and cross country. He was the school board advisor his junior year and the president of NHS his senior year. He plans to attend Missouri S&T in Rolla to obtain a degree in Engineering. The science department is honored this year to nominate Tristan Zeh to receive the senior award for his dedication to his education and exceptional work in the sciences during his four years of high school. Congratulations, Tristan.
--Amanda Clark


Social Studies - Emily Hahne
You were chosen for the Social Studies Department Award because of your dedication to history, government, and the social sciences. The skills and knowledge you gained in studies here, as well as your involvement in Youth and Government have prepared you to study Global Relations at Loyola. Throughout your time here, you have worked to improve the school through engagement and leadership in a variety of clubs and activities, skills that will serve you well as you pursue your degree and begin your career. Thank you Emily, for being an excellent student, role model, and leader. I am personally grateful that I was able to work with you in the classroom and in Interact. You brought fresh ideas and insight that helped inspire others to action, creativity, and learning. You were truly an asset to our school and we are going to miss you. We hope that you will stay in touch and update us as you embark on this next adventure. We look forward to seeing how far you go!
--Kerri Flynn


Special Education - Kayla Kleekamp
When we first met this student, the basketball and volleyball coaches were drooling over the tall coordinated young lady who would crush their dreams from day one. She was not playing sports, but she proved her talents in academics. She took off running, not literally even though the coaches tried and tried to get her on a team. She joined clubs such as Link Crew, Theater Guild, Meistersingers, Interact. She even became a cheerleader where she could cheer on the various sporting teams. She plans to go to ECC for two years to determine her calling. We wish her nothing but the best.
--Carla Campbell


World Languages - Audrey Bush
The World Languages Department would like to recognize Audrey Dae Bush for her outstanding achievements in World Language studies. Not only does Audrey excel in German and French, she is also working on the Italian language on her own time. She has learned very well HOW to learn languages, and her face lights up whenever she has an opportunity to communicate in another language. Along with her abilities to communicate effectively in German, French and Italian, Audrey has very successfully learned to appreciate the cultures and traditions of other countries. This makes her an outstanding World Citizen.
--Sarah Johnson