Statesboro High School senior Supriya Immaneni only missed one question on the SAT, giving her a score of 2370 and the title of Bulloch County STAR Student for 2012.
During a banquet Wednesday night in the Quality Inn & Suites ballroom, Immaneni and her STAR teacher, Richard McCombs, were among several students and teachers honored for high achievement. The STAR student for each Bulloch County high school was selected for having the highest SAT score as well as being in the top 10 percent in their class, said Kevin Judy, chairman of the Statesboro-Bulloch County Chamber of Commerce education committee.
The county STAR student was selected from the five high school STAR students.
“I’d really like to thank everyone who has been so supportive,” she said. She praised Statesboro High School Principal Marty Waters, saying he “pushes everyone to excel,” and thanked her parents for their part in helping her achieve.
Immaneni’s passion is science, and a science fair project involving determining whether ticks had a disease by examining their DNA attracted lots of attention, including that of Bulloch County Superintendent Dr. Lewis Holloway, said McCombs.
Holloway asked Immaneni to give a presentation to BOE members about her project, and when she finished, “he asked does anybody have any questions, because I don’t have any idea about what she just said,” McCombs said. “Supriya always sets the stage … and motivates others.
Immaneni said she chose McCombs as her STAR teacher because he “really motivated me to participate in so many activities I enjoy.” He is responsible for her involvement in the Science Olympiad and other science competitions, she said.
STAR students, teacher and other guests at the banquet enjoyed an inspirational speech by East Georgia College President Dr. Bob Boehmer.
He made several key points as he spoke to students, urging them to “pursue your passion … complete college … commit to a lifetime of learning … and give back to your community.”
It is important to love what you do, he said. Many students fail because “you don’t really love what you are studying.”
Obtaining college degrees, especially beyond bachelor degrees, is not only important for higher earnings but to make sure Georgia and the United States has qualified people to fill employment needs in the future, he said.
Immaneni said she is “thrilled” over the honor and hopes to pursue a career in medicine. She has not yet made decisions regarding where she will attend college.
Other STAR students attending the banquet were Bulloch Academy’s Matthew Alan Collins and his teacher Karen Whitten; Portal High School’s Mitchell Duckworth and his teacher Dennis Moore; Trinity Christian Academy’s Anne Tanner Murray and her teacher Sandy Kent; and Southeast Bulloch High School’s Abigail Sneathen and her teacher Brent Whitaker.
Holli Deal Bragg may be reached at (912) 489-9414.