Centralia High School and W.F. West High School joined together early last month to honor and recognize the top 10 academic seniors from each school for the class of 2022.
Centralia High School ranks its graduating seniors using the top 10 index criteria, which includes overall grade point average (GPA), assessment scores, challenging course work and participation in activities.
Centralia High School’s graduation ceremony is scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday at the Northwest Sports Hub in Centralia. The location has been changed from Tiger Stadium because of the predicted weather forecast.
Here are the top 10 students’ stories so far, and where they plan to go from here.
Austin G. Ulrigg
Austin Ulrigg is graduating from Centralia High School ranked first in his class by the top 10 index with a 4.0 GPA. He has also earned his associate in science degree with an emphasis in pre-physical therapy from Centralia College. Ulrigg’s parents are Lance and Krista Ulrigg. His older sister is Anastasia. Before becoming a full-time Running Start student, Ulrigg participated in cross country, basketball, National Honor Society, Link Crew and leadership at CHS. During his time at Centralia College, Ulrigg completed math classes along with his science degree such as calculus one through calculus four and linear algebra. Ulrigg has also earned a certificate of completion in statistical analysis from Centralia College. Ulrigg now works as a math and science tutor at Centralia College. He enjoys weightlifting, playing with his dogs and spending time with friends and family.
Next year, Ulrigg will be attending University of Washington Tacoma, where he plans to obtain a math degree. His longterm goal is to earn a doctorate in mathematics and become a math professor.
Lucy Nowicki, daughter of Mary and Donald Nowicki, is graduating fourth in her class and ranked second based on the top 10 index with a 3.99 GPA. Throughout her high school career, Nowicki has been an active member at CHS, including president of Link Crew, school board representative of ASB, SkillsUSA state president, secretary of band club and member since fifth grade, varsity player (four years) for track and soccer, and more. In her free time, Nowicki enjoys drinking coffee, collecting Pokémon cards and spending time with her cat, Yoshi.
After she graduates from Centralia High School, Nowicki will be attending the University of Washington. Nowicki has been admitted into the undergraduate neuroscience program, where she will begin her bachelor’s of science degree. Her goal is to become a neuroscientist and perform groundbreaking research.
Landon Kaut is the son of Randy and Julie Kaut. He is ranked third based on the CHS top 10 index. Kaut has participated all four years at CHS in tennis (four varsity letters), basketball (three varsity letters) and baseball (two varsity letters). He was voted most valuable player both junior and senior year for basketball. Kaut has also been a youth basketball coach and referee, along with being a part of Link Crew. He enjoys practicing sports in his free time, along with going on road trips and spending time outside. Kaut plans to attend Centralia College next year, where he will play basketball. He plans to study physics, chemistry and general science with the hope of entering into the medical field.
Evie Rooklidge is ranked fourth on the top 10 index for the class of 2022. She is also one of three class valedictorians. Rooklidge has played varsity volleyball and tennis for all four years of high school. In her free time, she enjoys singing, playing piano, taking photos and hanging out with her friends. Rooklidge will also graduate this spring with her associate in arts degree from Centralia College through the Running Start program. She plans to spend part of her summer in Costa Rica studying Spanish. In the fall, she will attend Corban University to pursue a degree in secondary education. She hopes to be able to work with Spanish-speaking high school students in the future.
Steven Neely is ranked fifth based on the CHS top 10 index and one of the three valedictorians. Neely’s parents are Charles and Sabine Neely. His immediate family also includes his older brother, William Neely, and older sister, Kathy Neely. Throughout high school, Neely has been involved in two main activities: soccer and band. He spends most of his time at his local church, Mountain View Baptist, at home on the farm or on the soccer field. Some of his favorite things to do in his free time are hiking, playing video games, playing soccer and hanging out with friends. He will graduate from Centralia High School and Centralia College in June and will take a gap year in which he will spend his time interning at his church. From there, he plans to go to Corban University and study ministry.
Annabelle Lewis is ranked number six in the indexed top 10 configuration at CHS. Lewis’ parents are Brandon and Monica and her siblings are Gabriel, Cameron and Josephine. Throughout high school, Lewis has been involved in choir for four years, softball, soccer and Link Crew. In her free time, Lewis enjoys painting in watercolor format, hanging out with friends and singing. Next year, the plan for Lewis is to attend Western Washington University and study English.
Victoriano Reyes, often called Victor or Junior by his friends and family, is ranked seventh based on the top 10 Index. He was born and raised in Centralia to his parents, Casey Reyes and Victoriano Reyes Mendez. He attended Jefferson Lincoln, Washington Elementary, Centralia Middle School and Centralia High School. He is the youngest and only boy of the three children and his siblings are Mariana Reyes and Jesse Reyes. Reyes enjoys watching and playing sports — specifically soccer and basketball — anime, video games, playing with his dog, Drea, and spending time with friends and family. During his time at CHS, Reyes has been a part of the boys soccer team for all four years and has attended Running Start, where he will be receiving his associate’s degree in June.
After he graduates from Centralia High School, Reyes plans to continue his education at Saint Martin's University in the fall of 2022, where he will be looking to earn his bachelor’s degree.
Annarazelle Garcia is a student at Centralia High School who became a full-time Running Start student at Centralia College in her junior year. Garcia is ranked eighth based on the top 10 index. She is graduating from both Centralia High School and Centralia College this year with her high school diploma and her associate in arts degree. She likes to volunteer at local food banks and thrift stores, and this has helped her learn a lot from the people in the community. Something that stuck out to her was the abundance of health problems people face. This, combined with her longtime love of science since fifth grade, has inspired her to pursue a career related to both genetics and cancer. She always found genetics to be a rather interesting topic, along with how it can play a role in cancer, so she has chosen genetics as her future course of study. Her passion for science has led her to enroll at Evergreen State College.
Asia Gardner was born in December of 2003. Since she was a child, she has been very outspoken, goal-driven and confident. Her confidence has allowed her to persevere through Centralia College’s associate's degree program for Running Start students with flying colors since her junior year. In fact, with her confidence in both her voice and her grades, Gardner has landed herself in three honor societies: the college’s Phi Theta Kappa, Washington’s Honor Society and the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS). She has many hobbies, a few of them consisting of art, anime, video games and more. Gardner tends to spend her free time either playing with her dog, Kuma, or spending quality time with friends. One of her favorite passions has been playing orchestral music since fourth grade. Gardner is ranked ninth based on the top 10 index. She has already been accepted with a full-ride scholarship to Washington State University and offered a work-study program in an international WSU business group. Having won certificates in her societies as the NSHSS Valedictorian, Gardner continues to pursue her entrepreneurial dreams in hopes to make a change in the world.
Isabella Martinez is a Centralia High School senior and a Running Start student. She is ranked 10th overall based on the top 10 Index. Originally from Los Angeles, California, she moved to Centralia when she was 10 years old. She has spent most of her high school years participating in activities such as art club, Skills USA, TRIO, the National Honor Society and volunteering at Twin Cities Mission for Women and Children. In her free time, she enjoys listening to music. Now in her second year of Running Start, she is on track to graduate with her associate’s degree and high school diploma in June and continue on to the University of Washington in Seattle to finish her bachelor’s degree. Her primary goal is to pursue a career in philanthropy with a focus of helping disadvantaged youth.