Notre Dame Prep commencement included 27 valedictorians

Sunday's commencement featured NDP's valedictorians among 200 graduating seniors who have finished high school careers highlighted by academic excellence, faith and service to the community.

On May 19, 2019, 200 young men and women walked across the stage in the school's gymnasium and received their diplomas after four years at Michigan's top Catholic high school. Among those 200 seniors were 27 who earned a place in the 2019 valedictory class.

At Notre Dame, traditional courses are weighted on a 4.000 basis, honors courses on a 4.500 basis, and Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses on a 5.0 basis. A student must have a cumulative GPA of at least 4.350 to be considered a valedictorian.

The faculty and staff at NDPMA are proud of the Class of 2019 and its valedictorians, but what they're perhaps most proud of is that this year's graduating seniors logged nearly 14,000 hours of Christian and community service — once again proving that besides turning out "academic scholars," Notre Dame continues to graduate "Christian people and upright citizens."

The 2019 Notre Dame Prep valedictorians are listed below each with a brief summary of their high school careers:

Evaristo Garcia Reyna resides in Rochester Hills with his parents, Evaristo and Claudia Garcia. During his high school career Evaristo was president of the National Honor Society, a member of The Sociedad Honoraría Hispánica, Vex Robotics, a Peer Leader Coordinator, Quiz Bowl team member, and varsity soccer captain. He was awarded the Gold and Silver Medal in the National Spanish Honor Exam. He also was recognized as a scholar-athlete and nominated to the Scholastic All Catholic team. Evaristo plans to attend the University of Michigan. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.52
Natalie Lyijnen resides in Bloomfield Hills with her parents, Mr. James Lyijnen and Mrs. Heather Sullivan. During her high school career, she was a member of the National Honor Society (secretary), the Sociedad Honoraría Hispánica, a Peer Mentor coordinator, played varsity golf, tennis and volleyball and was a member of the cooking club. Additionally, Natalie was awarded WXYZ-TV’s Best and Brightest Award. Natalie plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.519.
Juliet Jacoby resides in Waterford with her parents, Mark and Denice Jacoby. During her high school career, she was a member of the National Honor Society, Sociedad Honoraría Hispánica, Peer Leaders, Student Council (vice president), and she played tennis, golf and volleyball. Juliet also organized and volunteered for Cyber Seniors, a group that assists senior citizens with technology issues. Juliet plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.50.
Christopher VanDieren resides in Bloomfield Township with his parents, Michael and Regina VanDieren. During his high school career, Christopher was a member of the National Honor Society, Quiz Bowl, the Philosophy Club, theatre, and was band president. He also plays piano, clarinet and saxophone. Christopher received the National Merit Scholarship and is an AP Scholar with Distinction. He plans to attend the University of Michigan. Christopher will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.493.
Alena Manzor resides in Rochester Hills with her parents, Alberto and Odette Manor. During her high school career, Alena was a member of the National Honor Society, Sociedad Honoraría Hispánica, the Peer Leaders, Christians in Action, Optimist Club (vice president) and cooking club. Alena plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.485.
Joseph Joppich of Lake Orion is the son of Steven and Jennifer Joppich. He is the recipient of the National Merit Scholarship. During his high school career, Joseph was a member of the National Honor Society, Model UN, debate team, Polyglot club and played varsity baseball. Joseph plans to attend the University of Michigan. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.481.
Brian Gebara resides in Rochester Hills with his parents, Dr. Naji and Mrs. Celine Gebara. During his high school career, Brian was a member of the National Honor Society, the Spanish Honor Society, Student Council, Peer Leaders, swimming, lacrosse and football. Brian plans to attend University of Michigan. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.463.
Celia Pagnucco lives in Rochester Hills with her parents, Dave and Maureen Pagnucco. During her high school career, Celia was a member of the National Honor Society (secretary), Sociedad Honoraría Hispánica, counseling advisory board, Action for Africa club, Pre-Med club, the Champions for Life club, and the Varsity Club. She also played basketball, lacrosse, and volleyball. Celia plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.461.
Elizabeth Brouns resides in Clarkston with her parents, Daniel and Linda Brouns. During her high school career, she was a member of the National Honor Society, Model United Nations, marching band, and pit orchestra. Elizabeth played the trombone and was section leader for both the marching band and symphonic band and was on the bowling and softball teams. Elizabeth plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.456.
Antonio Gonzales resides in Clarkston with his parents, Dr. Dale Anthony Gonzales and Ms. Suzanne Gonzales. During his high school career, Antonio was a member of the National Honor Society, ski team and football team. Additionally, he volunteered at Elmhaven Manor and Ascension Crittenden Hospital. Antonio plans to attend Michigan State University. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.442.
Sydney Newby resides in Waterford with her parents, Angelo and Heidi Newby. During her high school career, Sydney was a member of the National Honor Society (parliamentarian), Sociedad Honoraría Hispánica, Peer Leaders, an AP Scholar with honor, and played softball, bowling and basketball. Additionally, Sydney volunteered at the Hero Foundation. Sydney plans to attend Bowling Green State University. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.432.
Alejandra Gonzalez resides in Pontiac with his parents, Mr. Alejandro Gonzalez and Mrs. Noemi Rivera. During her high school career, Alejandra was a member of the National Honor Society, Polyglot Club (president and founder), robotics, Christians in Action, Peer Leadership team, and was on the golf and tennis teams. She attended Cornell's Summer College where she studied American sign language, introduction to cognitive science, and introduction to biological research and professions. Alejandra plans to attend Cornell University. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.428.
Mariana Ortiz Luna resides in Rochester Hills with her parents, Mr. Gilberto Ortiz Jasso and Mrs. Mariana Luna Sanchez. During her high school career, Mariana was a member of the Peer Ministry group, Killer Bees robotics team, Anime club, Model United Nations, Computer club, Polyglot club, Girls Who Code, and Computer club. Additionally, she studied at Carnegie Mellon University, and Yale Center Beijing. Mariana plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.368.
Kevin Cragg resides in Bloomfield Hills with his parents, Dr. David Cragg and Mrs. Marsha Cragg. During his high school career, Kevin was a member of the National Honor Society, robotics and lacrosse. Additionally, he attained the rank of Eagle Scout with eight palms. He plans to attend Purdue University. Kevin will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.425.
Sarah Belhasan resides in Rochester Hills with her parents, Dr. Moulay Belhasan and Mrs. Nassira Aich. During her high school career, Sarah was a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, the Actions for Africa club (president), and the Polyglot club (secretary). Additionally, she interns at MADE, tutors and started her own French bakery business. Sarah plans to attend Cornell University. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.422.
Araceli Rizzo resides in Romeo with her parents, Gregory and Katherine Rizzo. During her high school career, Araceli was a member of the National Honor Society, counseling advisory board, environmental club and softball team. She also volunteered at Rochester Hills Public Library. Araceli plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.418.
Alexander Deck of Oakland Township is the son of Mr. Michael Deck and Dr. Dianne Vista-Deck. During his high school career, Alexander was a member of the National Honor Society, varsity baseball and varsity soccer. Alexander plans to attend the University of Michigan. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.398.
Thomas Frost resides in Bloomfield with his parents, Richard and Laura Frost. During his high school career, Thomas was a member of Killer Bees robotics, the Philosophy Club, Quiz Bowl, theatre and band. Thomas also volunteered at St. Hugo of the Hills to raise money for the IHM sisters. He plans to attend the University of Michigan. Thomas will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.390.
Aaron Crane resides in Rochester with his parents, John and Bridget Crane. During his high school career, Aaron was a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish National Honors Society, peer leader ministry, Varsity Club, and the cross country and track teams. Aaron also received the Scholastic All Catholic and American Citizenship awards. Additionally, he volunteered at Gleaners Food Bank. Aaron plans to attend the University of Michigan. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.393.
Matthew Wood resides in Waterford with his parents, Mr. William Wood and Ms. Maureen Syron-Wood. During his high school career, Matthew was a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, Student Council, Peer Leader Ministry, student ambassadors, theatre, the positivity committee, and he was captain of the cross-country team. Additionally, he volunteered at St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Shop and attended the LEAD Conference in Washington D.C. Matthew plans to attend the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.387.
Andrew Hannoudi resides in Bloomfield Hills with his parents, Dr. Ghadeer Hannoudi and Mrs. Renee Hannoudi. During his high school career, Andrew was a member of the National Honor Society, Student Council (president), Peer Leaders and soccer team. In addition, Andrew volunteered with St. Thomas Chaldean Church and the Michigan Kidney Consultants. Andrew plans to attend the University of Michigan. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.375.
Rachel DuRivage of Commerce is the daughter of Art and Mary DuRivage. During her high school career, Rachel was a member of the National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, and the volleyball, tennis and lacrosse teams. In addition, Rachel is an AP Scholar. Rachel plans to attend the University of Michigan She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.374.
Maura Kruse resides in Bloomfield Hills with her parents, Paul and Ronia Kruse. Maura has been named one of Notre Dame Prep’s valedictorians. During her high school career Maura was a member of the National Honor Society, Captain of Varsity Soccer, Varsity Basketball, Tennis, and Secretary for Action for Africa Club. Additionally, Maura volunteered at Samaritas, Lutheran Social Services, Ladies of Charity, Arab American Chaldean Council and Habitat for Humanity. Maura plans to attend University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.373.
Maria Agoytia resides in Rochester Hills with her parents, Mr. Ignacia Agoytia and Mrs. Daniela Martinez. During her high school career, Maria was a member of the National Honor Society, Christians in Action, The Alliance Project, Polyglot Club, knitting club and bowling team. In addition, Maria headed up the kitchen for the St. Irenaeus SOS dinner. Maria plans to attend DePaul University. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.375.
Mary Wright resides in Washington Township with her parents, Steven and Sandra Wright. During her high school career, Mary was a member of the National Honor Society, Killer Bees robotics, student newspaper, and the pit orchestra. Mary plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.365.
Kathryn Kennedy resides in Bloomfield Hills with her parents, John and Anne Kennedy. During her high school career, Kathryn was a member of the National Honor Society and soccer team, and is an AP Scholar. Kathryn plans to attend the University of Michigan. She will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.368.
Kevin Orloski resides in Rochester Hills with his parents Dr. Kevin Orloski and Mrs. Kathleen Orloski. During his high school career Kevin has been a member of the Spanish National Honor Society, Model United Nations, robotics, the Alliance Project, and theatre. Additionally, he volunteered at The Lighthouse of Oakland County, organizing food drives and donations for less-fortunate families. Kevin plans to attend the University of Michigan. He will graduate Notre Dame Prep with a grade point average of 4.368.

Comments or questions? mkelly@ndpma.org.

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About Notre Dame 
Notre Dame is a private, Catholic, independent, coeducational day school located in Oakland County. Notre Dame Preparatory School enrolls students in grades nine through twelve and has been named one of the nation's best 50 Catholic high schools (Acton Institute) four times since 2005. Notre Dame's lower and middle schools enroll students in pre-kindergarten through grade eight. NDPMA is an International Baccalaureate "World School" and is conducted by the Marist Fathers and Brothers. It is accredited by the Independent Schools Association of the Central States and the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement. For more on Notre Dame, visit the school's home page at www.ndpma.org



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