Farmington Students Inspire with 'Turn Around' Stories

Honorees at a Thursday awards ceremony have made changes to move their academic careers in a positive direction.

A new class of Farmington Public Schools high school and middle school students who have made inspiring life changes received Turn Around awards Thursday. 

The honorees – who enjoyed lunch at Glen Oaks Country Club in Farmington Hills with their families, school staff members and event sponsors – were nominated for making significant progress toward improving their grades, behavior and attendance. Supt. Susan Zurvalec noted 300 students have received the award since its inception.

"It has taken a tremendous amount of courage to change the course of their lives, and that's what we celebrate today," she said.

Keynote speaker Greg Harden, who is associate athletic director for the University of Michigan, praised what he called a "community event". 

"This is an organized effort to believe in young people," he said. "That's impressive." 

In addition to star-shaped keepsake, these students received gift certificates, tickets to the Farmington Civic Theater and other rewards from event sponsors:

  • Caleb Armstrong, 12th grade, North Farmington
  • Justin Azer, 8th grade, Dunckel
  • Dion Campbell, 8th grade, East
  • Jacob Cooper, 9th grade, Farmington
  • Maya Davis, 12th grade, Farmington
  • Marie Dedvukaj, 10th grade, Farmington
  • Christine Elly, 12th grade, Farmington Central
  • Stephani Etta, 8th grade, Dunckel 
  • Saceila Gonzalez, 12th grade, Farmington 
  • Faraz Hariri, 12th grade, Harrison
  • Kilian Harrison, 11th grade, Harrison
  • Aljahany Jackson-Bembry, 11th grade, North Farmington
  • Brooke Johnson, 8th grade, Dunckel
  • Maxfield Kraus, 8th grade, Dunckel
  • Grayson Montgomery, 11th grade, Harrison
  • Terry Moore, 12th grade, North Farmington
  • Kelsey Pakkala, 8th grade, East
  • Mattison Pierdon, 8th grade, East
  • Demetria Sandridge, 12th grade, Harrison
  • D Mya Smith, 11th grade, North Farmington
  • Anitra Ward, 8th grade, East 


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