Among this year's graduates from Hernando County's private schools and homeschools are a set of triplets, a pair of twins and a trio of nationally diverse students.
Kaitlyn Berleth, Kayla Berleth and Justin Berleth have been homeschooled by their parents, Jim and Dina Berleth of Spring Hill. Kaitlyn and Justin have enrolled at Trinity College, Trinity, where they are studying for careers in ministry and counseling. Kayla, employed at a day care center, aims to pursue training in early childhood education.
The triplets, active in ministries at Spring Hill Baptist Church, are among a class of 13 seniors who will graduate from homeschooled studies facilitated by Home Circle of Hernando. The circle, which coordinates activities and events for home-schooled students throughout the year, will sponsor commencement exercises.
Although the organization does not designate valedictorian and salutatorian, all the graduates are honor students, said coordinator Elizabeth Witherell.
Meanwhile, at West Hernando Christian School, twins Meghan Amanda Goode and Moira Shaunessy Goode will not only graduate together, they are also co-salutatorians.
The daughters of Trinette Goode and Chuck Paige and Mark and Amanda Goode, the twins have matching grade-point averages of 3.9.
Meghan plans to attend Clearwater Christian College, majoring in elementary education and missions. Moira intends to enroll at Pasco-Hernando Community College, then pursue a degree in business and missions at a university.
Wider Horizons graduates include natives of Florida, Pakistan and Korea.
Ariana Bond, daughter of Ira and Sandra Bond of Spring Hill, shares the valedictorian spotlight with Pakistan native Aarish Hasan, son of Dr. Syed and Jazyeen Hasan, who spend time in Pakistan and Spring Hill. Both graduates have maintained 4.0 grade-point averages since their freshman year.
They'll be joined at commencement exercises by Seok Won Kang, a Korean exchange student who enrolled at Wider Horizons for one year of study and stayed for three. Hosting his stay have been Patrick and Joan Soderquist of Spring Hill.
Bond and Hasan have logged "many, many hours of community service," said co-principal Julia Maglio, Bond at Health South and Hasan at a local walk-in medical clinic.
Bond will further her education at Florida State University in the field of meteorology, while Hasan has enrolled in the medical program at University of South Florida. Both are winners of Bright Futures scholarships.
Kang tentatively will pursue an international studies program at Purdue University Calumet.
Samantha Pippenger, who graduated from Wider Horizons in January, has since then been enrolled in an honors program at the University of Tampa.
At Spring Hill Christian Academy, the seniors spent time this year on a class project for Habitat for Humanity of Hernando County. The youths tackled paint scraping, repairs, maintenance and paint application at homes Habitat was refurbishing.
Meanwhile, the senior class at Hernando Christian Academy buckled to studies, its valedictorian and salutatorian earning greater than 4.0 grade-point averages.
Beth Gray can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.