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Meet the Genesis Preparatory's valedictorian and co-salutatorians

Valedictorian: Farid Mughni

Parents: Tahira and Muhammad Mughni

GPA: 4.44 weighted

Future school: University of South Florida

Ideal career: Physician

Most influential/best teacher: Mrs. Debbie Lees for guiding me through the college application process.

Favorite quote:

"Real knowledge is to know the extent of one's ignorance." Confucius

Favorite book: The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History, by Michael H. Hart

Clubs/extracurricular: Basketball, Interact Club, National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Teen Court, Junior State of America

How has the state of the economy and budget cuts impacted your education or education in general? Budget cuts have left less money available for student scholarships, thus making it more difficult for people to get educated. It's unfortunate that we as a nation often neglect to invest in our future.

Sage advice for the up-and-coming: Always respect and listen to your mother. Even if she is wrong, so are you if you displease her.

Name one thing you wish you had done in high school: I did everything I could have wanted in high school.

Co-salutatorian: Tamara Jandali

Parents: Hala Sahloul and Dr. Imad Jandali

GPA: 4.41 weighted

Future school: University of South Florida

Ideal career: Physician or dentist

Most influential/best teacher: Math teacher, Mr. Demetrio Begetis

Favorite quote: "No matter what others do or think, do the right thing, follow your own path and be your own person." My mom.

Hardships overcome: Learning to balance my academic schedule, which was very aggressive, and find time for myself

Favorite book: The White Queen by Suzanne Collins

Clubs/extracurricular: Volleyball, tennis, cooking, baking, volunteer at Spring Hill Regional Hospital

How has the state of the economy and budget cuts impacted your education or education in general? The competition for scholarships has increased greatly.

Sage advice for the up-and-coming: Take as many dual enrollment and advanced placement classes as you can throughout high school. You will be more prepared for success in college.

Name one thing you wish you had done in high school: I would have participated in more extracurricular activities, especially sports and community service. I just want to experience all I can!

Co-salutatorian: Ashley Ubaldini

Parents: Gary and Nikki Ubaldini

GPA: 4.41 weighted

Future school: University of South Florida

Ideal career: Genetic engineering.

Most influential/best teacher: Science teacher, Mrs. Paula Sparkes.

Favorite quote: "Happiness can be found in even the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light." Steven Kloves (screenplay), Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, spoken by the character Albus Dumbledore.

Hardships overcome: I went to the University of South Florida Honors Program in my senior year and had to overcome the transition of leaving my youth behind. I struggled with classes, but ended up with straight A's.

Favorite book: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, by JK Rowling

Clubs/extracurricular: Interact Club, National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Student Council, Teen Court, volleyball, soccer, USF Women's Rugby, worked at the YMCA in Kids Zone

How has the state of the economy and budget cuts impacted your education or education in general? It caused me to re-evaluate my plans to attend an Ivy League college. I stayed in Florida to take advantage of the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship and Florida pre-paid for college.

Sage advice for the up-and-coming: Focus on school. It should come before everything. After all, that's what's determining your future.

Name one thing you wish you had done in high school: Gone skydiving.

• Genesis Preparatory School commencement is at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the school.

Meet the Genesis Preparatory's valedictorian and co-salutatorians 05/22/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 22, 2012 4:47pm]

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