Category Archives: High School

Marietta Senior Headed to Brandeis University on Full Scholarship as a Posse Scholar

Posse_2019_00138Over 1500 Metro Atlanta students were nominated to receive the prestigious Posse Scholarship. Marietta High School’s Judith Borraz Martinez is one of 60 in the metro Atlanta area who were awarded the four- year, full tuition scholarship as a part of the Posse Foundation program and honored at the Fox Theater during a recent ceremony.

Founded in 1989, The Posse Foundation looks for students with “demonstrated leadership ability, communication, and team building skills” who may have been overlooked by top colleges,” according to the organization.

Judith, a member of the class of 2019, said the thought of being able to go to college is something she often dreamt of but questioned the possibility of it actually happening because of financial reasons.

“Winning the POSSE scholarship means that all of my doubts about attending a college no longer exist. It means that I will be able to continue developing my academic and leadership skills throughout college while also forming relationships that will last a lifetime. It means that all of the sacrifices my parents made were not in vain.”

She will attend Brandeis University in Massachusett, and although she hasn’t declared a major, she has an interest in health and would like to one day become a doctor.

Judith chose Brandeis because it has proved to be one of the best campuses in the country for diverse students like herself. She shared that she grew up and currently lives in a city that is rooted in tradition, values, and purpose and that she considers this diversity a crucial part of her lifestyle, much like Brandeis.

“The fact that Brandeis is nonsectarian and liberal while also rigorous lets me know that it is a university that will allow me to express myself academically, culturally, and emotionally, said Judith.

During her time at MHS, she has remained at the top of her class academically, served as the French Honors Society Vice President, and served as a leader within the PROSTART culinary program, placing 2nd and 3rd in past competitions. Additionally, Judith has been involved with Mentoring for Leadership, Key Club and Beta Club.

“I am so excited for Judith and this opportunity that she has been awarded,” said Ebonee Todman Mahone, Marietta High School’s scholarship coordinator. “I’ve had a great time working with her through the POSSE process, and she deserves this and has worked so hard for her success.  This is just the starting point for amazing things to come.”

In addition to scholarship funds, Posse Scholars receive pre-college training, a “posse” of peers at their university, staff support during college, and career coaching and workshops.

Judith is thrilled to have her “posse” as a  support system when she arrives on campus.

“It is such an honor to be able to say that I am a Posse scholar, and I could not be more excited to begin this new chapter of my life with my posse.”

One year ago Marietta celebrated Peyton Wilson, a member of the class of 2018, as she accepted has Posse Scholarship. Peyton is enrolled at The George Washington University.

Judith begins her college journey this fall.

Operation Graduation Launched in MCS

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Before heading into winter break, Marietta High School principal Keith Ball launched a new program in the district called ‘Operation Graduation.’  This cooperative initiative focuses on building strong relationships between Marietta’s schools, inspiring the district’s youngest students to aim for a successful graduation from MHS.

“Operation Graduation works to welcome students to the final stop on their Marietta educational journey, well before they ever officially step foot on campus as a high school student,” says Ball. “Our high school team will visit all elementary schools and Marietta Middle School for a 30 minute pep rally – complete with MHS cheerleaders, student leaders, and a film crew. Principals have selected VIG’s (Very Important Graduates) based on character, conduct, attendance and grades at each school and those VIG’s will receive a special gift during the event from MHS.”

During the pep rallies every 5th grader (Class of 2026) and every 8th grader (Class of 2023) will receive a rally towel. The rally towel is not only a cool gift, but is also the student’s FREE ticket in the door to two MHS’ upcoming basketball games.

Marietta’s Class of 2026 will be represented at the MHS January 18 basketball game against Kennesaw Mountain High School. Parents and guardians are required to purchase tickets, but every student in the class of 2026 gets in FREE to the game with their rally towel.  All students will sit in a reserved section designated just for the Class of 2026.

The Class of 2023 will have their special night during MHS’ January 11 basketball game against Hillgrove High School.

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Marietta High Graduates Largest Winter Class in School’s History

PLCWinter3.2018Marietta High School held Winter Commencement on December 20, 2018 at the Marietta Performing Arts Center. This was the largest winter commencement in the school’s history, with a total of 37 graduates.

“Our students have shown great perseverance this semester, not allowing potential obstacles to keep them from obtaining their goal of graduating from high school,” said B.J. Smith, counselor at the MHS Performance Learning Center. “They worked hard, became better students by communicating with their teachers, and have plans in place for their next steps in life.”

Makenzie Courts is one of the graduates who completed all necessary coursework a semester early and chose to participate in winter graduation.

“Makenzie will be starting classes at Georgia Highlands College in January where she will be working to complete an associate’s degree in Dental Hygiene,” said Smith.

Another graduate, Vladimir Hernandez, will start classes at Chattahoochee Technical College in January. He will be working in the area of Design and Media Production Technology. A great choice, seeing that Georgia is now the number one film production location in the world, with film and television  productions generating $9.5 billion in economic impact last year.

“Our students are equipped to take on anything,” said Marietta High School Principal Keith Ball. “Some are graduating in winter to get ahead, others struggled in a traditional setting and needed more one on one attention, but they are all academically ready for what’s next in life.”

Others in this group of graduates will also be attending Chattahoochee Technical College taking classes in automotive technology, cosmetology, and nursing.

Congratulations to our graduates!

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MCS Central Office Conference Room Named for Lemon Street Principal

Willie Hill_2018_00031On Friday, December 14, Marietta City Schools honored former Lemon Street High School Principal Willie Hill with a dedication ceremony. The district named the main conference room at the Marietta Central Office after Mr. Hill to honor of his legacy as long-time school and community leader.  

Speaking to the audience of 75 guests were his wife, Nellie Swint Hill, his daughter, Yolanda McGhee, Earnest Williams Chapter President of Omicron Mu Lambda/Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc, Don Johnson representing Mount Zion Church, and former Marietta High School Assistant Principal and first African American leader at Marietta City Schools, Josetta Walker.

A native of Brooks County, Georgia, Mr. Willie Hill served as principal of Marietta’s high school for Black students, Lemon Street High School, from 1965 – 1967. He was the school’s final principal prior to its integration with Marietta High School.

Post-integration, Mr. Hill was named assistant principal of Marietta High School and later became principal of Marietta’s Wright Street Elementary and Park Street Elementary schools.

During the event Superintendent Grant Rivera addressed the Hill family, along with various community members in the audience,  “When I look up at this inscription on the wall and his picture, it’s a reminder to me as superintendent and as an educator in this community to live up to the values of Mr. Hill.”

Upon his retirement as a school leader, Mr. Hill worked as Director of Educational Planning and System Development for Marietta City Schools. A long-time member of Zion Baptist Church, Mr. Hill was also a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Eden Lodge #46, the NAACP, and Board Member for the MACO Credit Union.

Mr. Hill was married to Nellie Swint Hill for thirty-eight years. To this union two children were born: Yolanda Hill McGhee and William Bernard Hill.

Mr. Hill departed this earthly life in 1997, but his legacy in the Marietta City Schools lives on in the fortitude of our students, teachers, and staff.

His picture and biography will now hang at the  entrance of the district’s main conference room

Bailey Chooses Tennessee

Today, Marietta High School four-star quarterback Harrison Bailey committed to continuing his football career at the University of Tennessee. Only a Junior, the Blue Devil signal-caller has received offers from dozens of schools, including Alabama and Miami. One of his teammates, four-star wide receiver Ramel Keyton, is committed to UT’s 2019 class. Bailey will be in UT’s 2020 class.

Bailey, who holds every Marietta High passing record, entered the MHS auditorium this afternoon to cheers from teammates, classmates, staff, and Marietta community members. With hats from both Michigan and Tennessee on the table in front of him, the crowd went wild as he picked up the Tennessee Orange hat and placed it on his head.

Bailey’s talent on the field led Marietta to the state playoffs in 2017 and 2018. He will play in the 2020 Adidas All-American game and carries a 3.6 gpa.

Why did Harrison choose Tennessee? His coach Richard Morgan gave us some insight. “Harrison was looking for a school that could not only provide an opportunity to use his athletic talents, but one where he could continue on a rigorous academic path like what we have here in Marietta. School atmosphere, the coaching staff, the school’s location and the opportunity to develop into a champion player all played into his choice today,” said Morgan.

And what about all of those school records Bailey has been busy shattering? Earlier this school year Coach Morgan told the Marietta Daily Journal this about the pro-style quarterback, “He breaks a record and it’s just, ‘OK’. That’s nice. On to the next challenge. None of it really affects him. None of it is anything he dwells on.”

Harrison Bailey’s 2018-2019 Stats:

212 completions / 335 attempts / 2809 yards and 29 Touchdown Passes in only 9 games played

In 3 years – Harrison holds every Marietta Passing Record:

TD Passes in a season – 29           Pass Completions in a Season – 212        Passing Yards in a Season – 2,812

TD Passes in a Game – 6               Pass Completions in a Game – 37            Passing Yards in a Game – 480

TD Passes in a Career – 71           Pass Completions in a Career – 546         Passing Yards in a career – 7,445

MHS AFJROTC Films Salute to Service Flag Raising Ceremony for NFL

Marietta High School Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training (AFJROTC)  Cadets recently had the opportunity to film a Salute to Service video at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the National Football League. The cadets were invited to participate in honoring our U.S. Veterans with the Atlanta Falcons organization for their Salute to Service Game held this past weekend, Sunday, November 18, 2018.

Lt. Colonel James Wilson accompanied the cadets, Group Commander Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Major, Vice Group Commander Andrea Badillo, Squadron Commander Cadet Major Alexandar Mares, and Commander Chief Master Sergeant Lesli Vazquez, to the stadium where each cadet was filmed raising a flag outside of the stadium; the American flag, the Georgia flag, and the Falcons and Atlanta MaUnited team flags. In addition, a flag for each branch of service was also raised.  Two of the cadets and Lt. Colonel James Wilson were interviewed in the video that aired during halftime during yesterday’s game.

Jamie Coder, Falcons Event Producer, also gave the cadets a tour of the Mercedes-Benz-Stadium and tickets to the game.

Salute to Service is the league’s year-round effort to Honor, Empower and Connect with our nation’s service members, veterans and their families. Salute to Service is highlighted in NFL games during Weeks 9 – 11 and other special events around the league, as fans and the NFL’s 32 clubs demonstrate their gratitude for the sacrifices of our heroes. Since 2011, Salute to Service has raised more than $26 million for military and veteran nonprofit organizations.

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Marietta Volleyball Focused on Developing a Culture of Success

IMG_6396In his first year as the Marietta High School volleyball coach, Coach Jeffrey Black and his team made leaps and bounds to set up the program for future success.

Finishing the season with a 13 – 21 record, Black says his team showed amazing progress throughout the season and established a strong culture for new MHS volleyball.

“Our varsity team is really young and we have high expectations for a bright future ahead,” said Black.

Their season-ending loss was a 5 set thriller against North Paulding, preventing them from advancing to the state playoffs. The Lady Devils lost the first 2 sets, won the next 2 sets and lost 13-15 in set 5. Coach Black said he learned a lot about his team during that match. “The girls will never stop fighting and supporting each other, he shared. “If we believe we can win, we can beat anyone.”

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The Lady Devils now have their eyes set on the future with plans to compete on a higher level with a much stronger schedule next year.

With freshman setter and natural leader, Schuyler Parker; Sophomore pin hitters and key offensive weapons, Kendall Gazaway, Lauren Walker, and Grace Thompson; increased roles from backcourt threats, Katie Bonner and Caroline Hankins; and juniors Sarah (SK) Krivsky and Morgan Darby as senior leaders, the Marietta Volleyball team will be one to watch.

The Marietta community can also expect a focus on youth with plans to expand the middle school program and to host elementary school clinics next year.

To ensure the future success of Marietta volleyball, MHS coaches launched their own youth club called Marietta Volleyball (MVB).  

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Over 50 girls participated in middle school volleyball tryouts last year, not including Marietta Sixth Grade Academy. “We only had enough coaches to form one team, so many young athletes were cut,” said Black. “Unfortunately, at that age, when kids get cut they may never try the sport again. “

With the MVB program, there will be more coaches to accommodate every athlete that tries out for volleyball in grades 6 – 8.  If there isn’t enough room on teams, athletes can participate in the developmental program to build their skills with the goal to make the team the following year.

MHS Senior Captain, Sarah Beth Poston and Senior Manager, Katharine Smart will serve as assistant coaches in the program   

As a volleyball club director, Coach Black is a huge advocate for club volleyball and credits a lot of player development to participation during club season.  

“Our athletes participating in club is really crucial to our success. High school season is 3 months long, club is 6-7 months long, nothing can replace the consistent practice and team atmosphere that club volleyball offers,” said Black.  

IMG_6367 (1).JPGDuring his time as a club director, he has helped numerous athletes gain exposure and get recruited to play at collegiate level schools across the country.  “The goal is always to find the perfect fit for the athlete’s academic and social needs, then compliment that with volleyball, shared Black.

Another addition to the MHS volleyball program will be a focus on academics to ensure athletes are performing in the classroom.  Volleyball players are expected to sit in the front of the class and positively represent MHS Volleyball.

Coach Black says the goal is for Marietta High School to become a dominant name in the local volleyball community. “We are not making any promises on winning championships, but are building a championship program where athletes are passionate about the game and love coming to practice.”


In 2019, high school athletes will participate in several summer camps in preparation for next season.  MVB will also offer a summer camp for elementary and middle school athletes in 2019.

To learn more about Marietta Volleyball and to stay updated on events visit mariettavolleyball.com.

 

Marietta Swimmers Advance to County and State Meets

MHS Swim & Dive Team with Trophy 2018Congratulations to the Marietta High School Swim and Dive Team, led by Coach Kristina Nesbitt, on their recent meet. MHS girls team placed 3rd and the MHS boys placed 2nd at the Central Lion First Chance Invitational.

The following swimmers earned 1st places and qualified for the State and County Meets:

  • Max Denney, Chris Castaldo, Alex Le, and Victor Osorio – 200 Medley Relay
  • Chris Castaldo – 500 Free, 100 Butterfly
  • Alex Le – 200 IM, 50 Freestyle
  • Eliza Reardon, Chloe Parker, KC Harper, Katharine Smart – 200 Medley Relay
  • Chloe Parker – 200 IM, 100 Breaststroke
  • Eliza Reardon – 100 Freestyle
  • KC Harper – 100 Butterfly, 100 Backstroke

This is the fifth season for the MHS Blue Devil swim teams. Last year the teams had a total of 14 state qualifiers with the boys placing 15th at state and girls placing 26th at state, earning their highest place at last year’s GHSA State Meet in the school’s history.

Marietta Middle School students had the opportunity to also compete and bring home their first trophy at the same meet. The MMS boys’ and girls’ teams earned 1st place at the Central Lion First Chance Invitational. The following swimmers won their events:

  • Jack Vega – 50 Freestyle
  • Jessica Harper – 100 Freestyle
  • Sofia Etheredge – 100 Breaststroke
  • Lindsay Lavelanet, Ella Chevalier, Mikayla Moore, Kindle Martin – 200 Freestyle Relay

MMS Swim Team with Trophy

Marietta Fastpitch Sets Record for All Region Selection

Marietta FastPitch set a new school record this year, sending four students to represent the school’s softball team on the 3-7A All-Region Team, the most the school has ever sent according to Head Coach Neal Sammons.

“Great things are on the horizon for Marietta Fastpitch,” said Sammons. “This is the first time we’ve had so many players represented on the All-Region team. If you see these young ladies in the Marietta High hallways, please say congratulations to them.”

The following students are representing Marietta Fastpitch in All-Region play.

1st Team All-Region Infielder – Zoe Adams (10th)

2nd Team All-Region Outfielder and Flex – McKenzie Walker (10th)

2nd Team All-Region Catcher – Talia Thomas (11th)

Honorable Mention Outfielder – MiKayla Duke (10th)

Check out a few photos from this fall’s Fast Pitch Season:

MHS Marketing Students Place at Fall Conference

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(L to R top photo): Dylan Schied, Abby Jacobs, Karena Grigenas, Maggie Smith, Faith Kumi, Allison Hidalgo, Sam Judd, and Nayna Shah (not pictured). 

Marietta High School’s marketing students recently competed at the DECA Fall Leadership Conference and received the 3rd-Place trophy in the Membership Recruitment contest.

Marietta students participating in the district’s DECA club have an interest in or are preparing for careers in fields such as management, finance, entrepreneurship, marketing, and hospitality.  By participating in this pathway, students have the opportunity to create their own business ideas as well as assist local businesses with their marketing efforts. In doing so, they are able to build an impressive online portfolio and resume while also receiving money, scholarships, job placements, and internships.

Students can also compete in DECA marketing competitions and the annual Devil Tank competition for a chance to win money and prizes. The Marketing Communications & Promotions program is “industry certified” by the American Marketing Association (AMA). Marketing Communications & Promotions is one of eleven MHS Career Pathways that has been approved as IBCP.

On the same day, MHS DECA members all made a perfect score on the DECA Statesman Exam at the leadership conference and entered a float in the homecoming parade.

The national organization has 200,000 members on over 3,500 high school and college campuses.

With nearly a 70-year history, DECA has impacted the lives of more than ten million students, educators, school administrators, and business professionals since it was founded in 1946, according to the DECA national website.

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