Top of the class
by Brooke Blanton Leith
This fall, St. Mary’s University welcomed an astounding number of valedictorians and salutatorians into its Class of 2025. Hailing from all corners of the state, each of these 13 students chose to become Rattlers after graduating in one of the top two spots in their high school senior class.
Pursuing a wide range of academic interests — with majors in Music, Biology, Marketing and Criminal Justice, to name a few — these students plan to use their St. Mary’s education to make their mark on the world.
“To me, that’s what academic excellence looks like. Being able to get an experience that a textbook can’t provide.”
Clara Sobery was salutatorian of her high school in Adkins and chose to double major in Physics and Mathematics with a double minor in Art and Environmental Science.
“I want to work for NASA and publish the research from astronomical findings in a way that anyone can understand,” Sobery said.
The academic rigor and community feel attracted these high-performing students to St. Mary’s, like Sarah Guerrero, a Communications and Spanish major who graduated first in her class at the Advanced Learning Academy at Fox Tech High School.
“We’re taught more than just memorizing material at St. Mary’s. We learn to think critically and apply what we learn to our other classes and to life,” Guerrero said. “To me, that’s what academic excellence looks like. Being able to get an experience that a textbook can’t provide.”