Class of 2023
The class of 2023 began the next chapter in their lives after their commencement ceremony on Friday, May 26, 2023. Their hearts are filled with excitement, gratitude and uncertainty for the future. They are excited to exit this chapter of their lives and enter another with the Word of Christ engrained in their hearts to provide change throughout the world. Now as they look back on fond memories at CCS with appreciation, they also brace themselves for the future with eagerness and uncertainty. Although their thoughts about the future are ambivalent, they will prepare themselves for any obstacle with stoicism and determination. They want to say, "Thank you so much to our peers, our parents and our faculty for providing us with many memorable experiences!"
Footprint Recipients: Students who attended CCS from kindergarten through their senior year were recognized for the footprints they have left on the hearts of those at CCS throughout their K-12 educational career. Those students are: Ashley Lopez, Gillian Storey, Parker Coates, Avery Utley (front row l-r), Remi Greenberg, Samantha Frankio, Zach Thibodeaux (middle row l-r), Addison Petru, Luke Ramirez, Olivia O'Bannon and Max Landrum.
Valedictorian: Gillian Storey earned the distinguished honor of being named Valedictorian for achieving the highest grade point average in her class, and was awarded the Faculty Scholarship for Academic Excellence. Gillian will attend Texas A&M University in the fall. Her life verse is Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
Salutatorian: Parker Coates earned the title of Salutatorian for achieving the second highest grade point average among his peers. Parker will attend Texas A&M University this fall. His life verse is 1 Corinthians 1:10 – I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment.
Spirit of Paul Scholarship: The Spirit of Paul Scholarship was established to encourage students to develop and display the driving spirit and perseverance of the Apostle Paul, who accomplished much for the early church. The recipient of this award has exhibited that same drive and perseverance. This CCS scholarship is funded by donations given to CCS in memory of loved ones. This year’s scholarship is given to Chloe Roberson. Chloe will attend Oklahoma Baptist University in the fall. Her life verse is Galatians 2:20 – I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
Will Rhodes Athletic Scholarship: This scholarship was established in memory of CCS Student William David Rhodes. Each year there are two recipients: one male and one female. The recipients of this award are CCS students who make public profession of their faith in Jesus Christ, who demonstrate Christ-like behavior to fellow students and athletes, and whose lives are living witnesses to others as they lead their teams and follow their coaches. It is a great honor to award this year’s scholarships to Gillian Storey and Preston Hamrick. Preston will attend Florida Atlantic University this fall. His life verse is John 13:7 – Jesus answered him, What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.
Andrew Gladney ('05) Memorial Heart of Gold Scholarship: The Andrew Gladney Heart of Gold Memorial Scholarship was established to recognize a graduating senior who, much like the alum the scholarship memorializes, has a “Heart of Gold” – loving and accepting all, inside and outside the community of CCS. One who strives to do their very best; participates wholeheartedly in activities to reflect Christian character and sportsmanship; and diligently pursues and excels academically according to their ability. The recipient of this year’s award truly embodies and has continually and faithfully demonstrated each one of these character traits during their time here at CCS. This year, the Andrew Gladney Heart of Gold Memorial Scholarship is presented to Kiley Kreitz. Kiley will attend the University of Alabama at Birmingham this fall. Her life verse is 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 – But He said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
Linwood Brown Memorial Scholarship: Linwood Brown spent most of his adult life faithfully serving in the classroom teaching mathematics. Mr. Brown left a legacy of peace. 1 Timothy 6:6 says, “Godliness with contentment is great gain.” Therefore, it makes sense to award the Linwood Brown Scholarship to a student who exemplifies that same peace. This student was often observed helping her peers with difficult math problems and participating in class discussions with a quiet fortitude. Her compassion for others was reminiscent of one who knows the Lord. This year, the recipient of the Linwood Brown Scholarship is Cayden Tate. Cayden will attend Texas A&M University this fall. Her life verse is Philippians 1:27 – Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel.
Fine Arts Scholarship: Cypress Christian School has a rich heritage of producing students who excel in the areas of music, art and drama. The Fine Arts Scholarship reflects an overall excellence in the arts. This year's recipients are Jessica Atkins and Tyson Anding. Jessica will attend Abilene Christian University this fall. . Her life verse is Romans 8:38-39 – For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Tyson will attend Texas Tech University this fall. Her life verse is 1 Peter 5:6-7 – Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.
Elizabeth Buck Memorial Scholarship: The Elizabeth Buck scholarship is awarded to a graduating senior who demonstrates high interest in the area of design and architecture. Elizabeth Buck was awarded a scholarship in 1948 to attend college in Massachusetts for interior design. She decided to follow her heart to marry a man she had known for her entire life and passed away right before their 64th anniversary. Throughout her life she was able to use her skill and knowledge to make each home a place of welcome and friendship. Her granddaughter is a teacher at Cypress Christian School and three of her great grandchildren are currently attending to learn more about making their decisions based on faith and family. The family of Elizabeth hope that through this scholarship her Christian character and love of family and friends will help others use their skill and knowledge to make homes and buildings a place of welcome. This year’s recipient is Olivia O'Bannon. Olivia will attend Texas A&M University in the fall. Her life verse is Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.
Travis Chaffin Memorial Scholarship: Travis Chaffin was a student at Cypress Christian School who loved the Lord with all his heart, and he loved the sport of baseball. To his classmates and teammates, he was an encourager, a leader, a great athlete and a friend. To his teachers, Travis was a gifted student and someone who worked hard to achieve his very best. To everyone he came into contact with, Travis was a shining light for Christ. The scholarship is awarded to a student who shares in these attributes and that has the potential to make an impact on this world with their own Christian walk. This year, we honor Zach Thibodeaux who exemplifies these attributes. Zach will attend Texas A&M University this fall. His life verse is Hebrews 4:12 – For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Tammy Otts Memorial Scholarship: The Tammy Otts Memorial Scholarship was created to honor the memory of Tammy Otts and the impact that she had on her many students and families during the 10 plus years that she taught at Cypress Christian School. Mrs. Otts had three children who graduated from CCS. Although we were saddened by her passing on June 14, 2022, we are delighted that she is now in the presence of God. The Tammy Otts Memorial Scholarship is awarded to a graduating senior that will be pursuing a degree in education. This year's recipient is Bethany Janz. Bethany will attend Texas A&M University this fall. Her life verse is 2 Corinthians 4:17 – For our momentary light affliction is producing for us an absolutely incomparable eternal weight of glory.
Commit for Life Scholarship: This year, the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center's Commit for Life scholarship program awarded 43 scholarships. Recipients are chosen based on an essay or video submission that inspires individuals to save lives as a blood donor, explains how to have a successful blood drive or encourage diverse donations from young donors after they graduate high school/college. In addition, the student's school must host a minimum of two blood drives this academic school year, the student must be enrolled in an institution of higher education or trade school in the Summer/Fall following the award of the scholarship and the applicant must be an active member of their blood drive team and include a letter of recommendation from their blood drive sponsor regarding their advocacy for blood donations at their school. Cayden Tate was awarded a $5,000 scholarship.