Education: 15 Floyd students earn AP Capstone Diploma, 30 awarded AP Seminar and Research Certificate. GHC offers  Entrepreneur Speaker Series.

Education: 15 Floyd students earn AP Capstone Diploma, 30 awarded AP Seminar and Research Certificate. GHC offers Entrepreneur Speaker Series.

Class of 2021 graduate Marc Wetherington accepts his diploma from Model High principal Kevin Strickland

Media release: At Floyd County Schools, 15 students have earned the AP Capstone Diploma™ and 30 have earned the AP Seminar and Research Certificate™ during the 2020-21 school year. The AP Capstone Diploma program helps students to develop critical thinking, research, collaboration, and presentation skills that are critical to academic success.

“We proudly recognize the achievements of students who participated in the AP Capstone Diploma program,” said FCS superintendent Dr. Glenn White. “Our AP Capstone students and teachers showed extraordinary commitment while facing historic challenges. This is a meaningful college readiness program that will serve our students well after high school.”

To receive the AP Capstone Diploma, students must earn scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar, AP Research, and on four additional AP Exams. To receive the AP Seminar and Research Certificate, students must earn scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar and AP Research. Students are increasingly participating in the AP Capstone program. Over 2,000 schools participated in the AP Capstone program worldwide during the 2020-21 school year, when approximately 11,900 students earned the AP Capstone Diploma and 7,700 earned the AP Seminar and Research Certificate.

Unlike traditional AP subject exams with a single end-of-year assessment, AP Seminar and AP Research assessments are project-based and evaluate skills mastery through group projects, presentations, and individual essays completed throughout the year. Instead of focusing on one specific academic discipline, AP Seminar and AP Research are interdisciplinary: students are empowered to create research projects based on topics of personal interest and they are assessed on critical thinking, research, collaboration, time management, and presentation skills needed to complete their projects.

Of the students who participated in the AP Capstone Diploma program at FCS:

  • 15 were awarded the AP Capstone Diploma by earning scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar, AP Research, and on 4 additional AP Exams.

    • Hannah L. Dellis- AHS, 2021 graduate

    • Ethan T. McGhee- AHS, 2021 graduate

    • Alexia D. Fowler- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Emily E. Gallman- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Isabel S. Edwards- MHS, senior

    • Isabelle J. Perez- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Jillian F. Giles- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • John B. Estes- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Logan S. Chastain- MHS, senior

    • Luke C. Naddy- MHS, senior

    • Sophia G. Swann- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Tristen D. Sprayberry- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • William J. Marshall- MHS, senior

    • Arden O. Koch- PHS, senior

    • Skylar L. Caldwell- PHS, 2021 graduate

  • 30 were awarded the AP Seminar and Research Certificate by earning scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar and AP Research.

    • Peyton R. Alford- AHS, senior

    • Madison E. Burton- AHS, 2021 graduate

    • Makayla N. Downs- AHS, senior

    • Emma J. Harrell- AHS, senior

    • Carlee P. Poole- AHS, senior

    • Kacie M. Middleton- CHS, senior

    • Alex R. Arrington- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Ashley Vicente-Perez- MHS, senior

    • Ashton B. Fox- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Briggs A. Poyner- MHS, senior

    • Elizabeth J. Yancey- MHS, senior

    • Ella G. Burgess- MHS, senior

    • Ella R. Brewer- MHS, senior

    • Janie E. Brothers- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Gary M. Wetherington- MHS, 2021 graduate (pictured)

    • Jayden L. Coleman- MHS, senior

    • Kyndall E. Burnes- MHS, senior

    • Laura K. Cole- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Lauren M. Akemon- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Molley M. Maddox- MHS, senior

    • Molly W. Burton- MHS, senior

    • Neely K. Brownlow- MHS, 2021 graduate

    • Ashton G. Vincent- PHS, senior

    • Diana Bucio-Almaras- PHS, senior

    • Kathryn G. Bright- PHS, senior

    • Lauren N. York- PHS, 2021 graduate

    • Maria G. Sandoval- PHS, senior

    • Megan S. Henderson- PHS, 2021 graduate

    • Nadia C. Haas- PHS, senior

    • Sara K. Norton- PHS, 2021 graduate

21 were graduating seniors in the class of 2021.


Georgia Highlands College’s School of Business and Professional Studies will begin its Entrepreneur Speaker Series on Wednesday. Two more speakers are planned for Sept. 15 and Oct. 6. The series will connect successful entrepreneurs with students and the community to share stories and advice in a virtual format.

“One of the best ways you can become a successful entrepreneur is by listening to entrepreneurs who are already successful,” Assistant Professor of Business Administration Shanika Wright-Turner said. “You’ll hear firsthand what it takes to grow a successful business.”

Visit for more information and to register for any speaker event in this series.

Wednesday – Candace Walker

Candace Walker is the Director of the Atlanta Police Department Crime Lab. With more than a decade of forensic experience, she is the first black woman to hold the agency’s title. Walker, a forensic scientist, specializes as a Firearm and Toolmark Examiner. She has a Bachelor of Science in Biology, minoring in Forensic Chemistry, and a Master of Science in Criminal Justice Administration from Loyola University New Orleans.

Walker is also the owner and creator of The Vibrary: Wine and Bookbar. The Vibrary is in the heart of Stone Mountain Village and opened August of 2021. The Vibrary features book signings, book clubs and wine experiences.

“To accomplish anything, ‘sticktoitiveness’ is necessary,” Walker said.

Sept. 15 – Becky Gabany

Becky Gabany is the System Director of Community Health for Memorial Health System in Springfield, IL. She is responsible for community benefit programs at Memorial Medical Center and provides support in those areas for the affiliates of Memorial Health System.

Gabany has a passion for equity and a desire to learn, grow and act as an ally for those who are marginalized. She believes that entrepreneurship comes in many forms and encourages others to look within their circles of control to affect change.

Oct. 6 – Cade Joiner

As a proud Georgia native, Cade Joiner has been responsible for the creation and growth of more than a dozen different businesses in the state. After earning a Bachelor of Business in Marketing from the University of Georgia, he founded Shred-X Secure Document Destruction, which is now the largest independent shredding company in the southeast.

He is the Chairman of the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) of Georgia and is also a strategic partner at Brookwell Capital, raising private capital for businesses across the country. He sits on the boards of several start-ups around the state.

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