Congratulations to the Top 10 students of the Class of 2018

The Fonda-Fultonville Central School District is proud to announce the Top 10 students of the Class of 2018:

  1. Allison Codi
  2. Nicholas Oertel
  3. Alyson Shirley
  4. Tyler Kearns
  5. Matthew Klotz
  6. Adam DeSorbo
  7. Keddren Reid
  8. Mariah VanAvery
  9. Liam Jager
  10. Ryleigh Hesch

“These top 10 graduates represent so much more than a group of students with good grades,” Fonda-Fultonville High School Principal Aaron Grady said. “They are volunteers, community members, athletes, artists, musicians, employees. Everything they were involved in represented balancing acts, and that’s what’s most impressive about this group. We look forward to watching them make their marks on this world and take pride in knowing they got their start at FFCS.”


1. Allison Codi

student sits in a chair in a fieldAllison Codi, the daughter of Michael and Amy Codi, is a standout student who excels on all fronts. While achieving the No. 1 ranking in the Class of 2018, Codi has been involved in numerous clubs, volunteer work and athletics, all while balancing employment. Codi is the president of the Class of 2018. She is involved in Odyssey of the Mind, serves as secretary for HS Student Government and the student representative of the Building Leadership Team, is a captain of the volleyball team, and is a member of Skype Club, Key Club and National Honor Society. She has been a student mentor, volunteered for the Swing for Anna King golf tournament and Lifeworks BVI Community Service Trip.

Codi has received awards for highest cumulative average in grades 9-11, and the Highest Average Awards in Geometry, Algebra II, Statistics and Chemistry. She also received awards for Highest Average on the U.S. History Regents, she was a semifinalist in Coca-Cola Scholars, received AP & Project Lead the Way student achievement in engineering, the Air Force Math and Science Award, RIT Computing Medal and the Clarkson School Award. Codi has participated in Summer Enrichment at WPI Frontiers, RPI Product Innovation program, University of Rochester Pre-college program and People to People: Australian Adventure.

Codi will attend Lehigh University in the fall.

“I enjoyed the global education experiences I obtained through Skype Club,” Codi says of her time at FFCS. “I was able to expand my horizons and see the world in a new light through the interactions I had with students from around the globe.

“I will miss the teachers who are willing to go above and beyond to ensure my academic success,” she says.


2. Nicholas Oertel

portrait of a student in a blue shirtNicholas Oertel, the son of Hans and Deborah Oertel, has earned the No. 2 ranking in the Class of 2018. Oertel is a well-rounded student who is involved in a multitude of activities. He is a member of the Superintendent’s Student Cabinet, Key Club, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Skype Club and National Honor Society. He is a member of the football team, basketball team and track and field team.

Oertel is active in the community with St. Cecilia and Sacred Heart churches, and Gloversville Community Winds. He has been on principal’s list for all four years of his high school career, while taking several Advanced Placement, honors and College in the High School classes.

He has received the University of Rochester Bausch and Lomb Honorary Science Award, Clarkson University Achievement Award, Rensselaer Medal Award, News Channel 13 Scholar-Athlete for Basketball, and the John J. Furman Award for Football-Academics.

Oertel will attend RPI  in the fall.

“The most valuable experience of my education was the college-level courses I’ve taken, and the teachers in those classes who pushed me to be the best that I can be,” Oertel said of his time at FFCS. “Every college-level class I have taken has prepared me for what I will experience in college, and I appreciate the dedication that my teachers put in to furthering my education.”

“I will miss how close the relationships are between students and teachers,” he says. “I always felt very connected to all of my teachers and I will definitely miss that close relationship. The friendships I’ve made with my classmates and personal relationships I’ve had with my teachers has shaped me into who I am today.”


3. Alyson Shirley

HS Senior leans against a stone wall in a fieldAlyson Shirley, the daughter of Scott and Bobette Shirley, is ranked No. 3 in the Class of 2018. She has taken many advanced classes, including college-level US History, Pre-Calculus, Statistics, English I and II, Participation in Government, Spanish and Calculus, along with Honors Biology and Global II.

Shirley is vice president of the Class of 2018, as well as a member of the National Honor Society, Key Club, HS Student Government, Skype Club and Yellow Roses. She has participated in Cross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track, Wind Ensemble and Jazz Band. She volunteers with the Glove Community Winds and for the Cubby Faville Memorial Golf Tournament and activities at Pineview Commons, while working a part-time job.

Shirley will attend Bentley University in the fall.

“The most valuable experience of my education at FFCS was the frequent, genuine conversations with my teachers,” Shirley said. “I will miss the teachers who I have grown close to, my friends, and acquaintances who made my days interesting.”


4. Tyler Kearns

high school senior sits against a tree stumpTyler Kearns, the son of Christine and Joseph Kearns, is ranked No. 4 in the class. Kearns is actively involved in many clubs at school, and is enrolled in the New Visions Health Care Program.

Kearns is a member of Key Club, Student Government, Skype Club, Drama Club, National Honor Society and National Technical Honor Society. He has participated in Indoor/Outdoor Track and Golf.

He has received awards for Distinguished Key Club Lieutenant, Outstanding Senior Key Club Member, Distinguished Key Club member, University of Rochester Young Leaders Award, RIT Innovation and Creativity Award and the Global II Regents Award.

Kearns will attend St. Lawrence University in the fall.

“The most valuable experiences that I have had at FFCS are the trips that I have taken through Key Club or the band program,” Kearns says. “I believe traveling to different parts of the world and meeting new people is one of the most important things people can do in their lives to help broaden their perspective on the world.”

“I will miss the sense of community that our school had between faculty and students,” he says. “I will also miss the activities I was involved in and the spirit the students had at the football games.”


5. Matthew Klotz

student crouched down with arms resting on kneesMatthew Klotz, the son of Michael and Judith Klotz, is ranked No. 5 in the Class of 2018. Klotz attends the New Visions Health Care program and is gaining valuable experience in the medical field.

Klotz has participated in Indoor and Outdoor Track, Key Club, Wind Ensemble, Skype Club, Student Mentoring, All County Chorus and Select Chorus. He is taking AP Biology, New Visions Calculus and college-level US History.

Klotz will attend University at Buffalo in the fall.

Klotz said the most valuable parts of his education at FFCS were the teachers and the opportunities and classes that were available.

“Being able to advance in math and science classes, and being able to shadow medical professionals as a part of my school day were just fantastic and something I’ll never forget,” he says.

“I’ll definitely miss the teachers and faculty the most,” Klotz said. “I wouldn’t be who I am today without Mrs. Stead destroying me in Algebra II and Calc, and Mr. T yelling about history or politics, and Mr. Hogan having off-topic but deep discussions.”


6. Adam DeSorbo

HS Senior sits on a stoop in a fieldAdam DeSorbo, the son of Todd and Lynn DeSorbo, is a well-rounded student who is ranked No. 6 in the Class of 2018. DeSorbo challenges himself by taking honors and Advanced Placement courses, including AP Biology, and college-level US History, Pre-Calculus, Calculus, Statistics, English I and II, Principles of Business and Participation in Government.

DeSorbo has excelled in the Fonda-Fultonville golf program, with honors including captain for 4 years, Sectional champion, Colonial Council first team, Western Athletics Council first team, and was selected as five-time team MVP.

DeSorbo is a member of the National Honor Society, coordinator of TEDxYouth@FFHS talk, delegate for the 2018 Youth Assembly at the United Nations and member of Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara’s Student Cabinet. He volunteers at Capasso and Associates Law Firm, St. Mary’s Church, the youth golf camp at Hales Mills Country Club, and various charity golf tournaments, all while holding down a part-time job at St. Mary’s Hospital.

DeSorbo will attend University of Texas at Dallas in the fall.

DeSorbo said the most valuable experience of his education at FFCS was the “ability to express my individual aspirations and collaborative ideas with other students, using the support of the faculty at FFCS. From the administration to teachers, they are always willing to hear ideas and allow ideas to flourish.”

“I will miss the relationships I have built with my fellow students and the teachers who have turned into role models that have changed my life throughout my most influential high school years,” DeSorbo said.


7. Keddren Reid

high school senior leans against a tree trunkKeddren Reid, the daughter of James Reid and Valerie Charpentier, is ranked No. 7 in her class. She has been involved in many extracurricular activities throughout high school, including Girl Scouts, Concert Band, Mixed Chorus, Select Chorus, Marching Band, Wind Ensemble, Pep Band, Skype Club, National Honor Society, Drama Club, Character Council and president of the Yellow Roses. She was a FFCS Student of Distinction and was on the principal’s list while holding down a part-time job.

Reid will attend the College of St. Rose in the fall.

“The most valuable experience of my education was having an environment to go through all of my embarrassing phases of adolescence without major criticism,” Reid says. “I’m going to miss the social safety net of my stunning friends, whom I have no idea how I am going to function without. I adore all of them and they’ve made my days spectacular.”


8. Mariah VanAvery

high school senior Mariah VanAvery is the daughter of Robert VanAvery. She is involved in a multitude of clubs and sports, and is ranked No. 8 in her class. Her activities include Art Club, Wind Ensemble, Select Chorus, National Honor Society, Drama Club, Key Club, Skype Club, Yellow Roses and Secretary for the Class of 2018.

VanAvery participates in Varsity Cross Country and Basketball Cheerleading. She has consistently been on the principal’s list and received the Sage Merit Scholarship and Elk’s Most Valuable Student Award.

VanAvery volunteers at Fulton Center Nursing Home, Cornerstone Baptist Church, Cornerstone Youth Group and works a part-time job.

VanAvery will attend Sage College of Albany  in the fall.

“The most valuable experience of my education is the New Visions Healthcare Program,” she says. “This program allowed me to gain experience and observe many different health care professions and procedures. Without this program, I would not have known that I love working with the disabled population and want to pursue a career in that branch of medicine. Along with gaining new experiences, I have made many new friendships with the other students in this program.

“I will miss the faculty and teachers the most at FFCS,” VanAvery says. “The support and guidance I have obtained have changed my character tremendously. I would personally like to thank Mr. Fedele for all of his dedication to myself as an individual.”


9. Liam Jager

student leans against a treeLiam Jager, the son of Wendy Jager, is ranked No. 9 in his class. He is a member of National Honor Society, PTSA and Key Club.

Jager volunteers for Hospice, Montgomery County SPCA, NYS Children’s Foundation and the Amsterdam Area Faith Formation Program. He is a Student of Distinction and received the Rochester Institute of Technology Computing Medal Scholarship.

Jager will attend Clarkson University in the fall.

“My most valuable experience was having teachers who could teach college-level classes in high school, enabling me to earn college credits,” Jager said. “I will miss the school community, both teachers and classmates.”


10. Ryleigh Hesch

high school senior leans against a treeRyleigh Hesch, the daughter of Eric and Jerelyn Hesch, is ranked No. 10 in the Class of 2018. She is involved in Basketball, Outdoor Track, Wind Ensemble and Select Chorus. She is captain of the Varsity Soccer team, treasurer for National Honor Society and vice president of Spanish Club.

Hesch volunteers at her church and spreads holiday cheer by caroling at nursing homes.

Hesch will attend Tompkins Cortland Community College in the fall.

“What I would name to be my most valuable experience would be the opportunity to take college classes in high school,” Hesch says. “Taking these classes has allotted me the opportunity to accomplish my goals at a faster rate. I have also experienced a taste of real, difficult classes and it helped me to grow as a student.”

“The atmosphere at FFCS gives off a feeling of home,” she says. “I feel as though when walking into the school, there is just a sense of comfort. Although school has its stresses, the people care at FFCS and only want to help. Fonda-Fultonville has been like a second home for the past 13 years and what I will miss the most about my home is the FFCS family. The students and the staff will be the hardest goodbye for my final year.”