Honor Grads carry on tradition of hard work, leadership
1, 2012 – Many years ago, Goshen High School administrators began
honoring the top six graduating seniors instead of the traditional top
two. It was found that these high-achieving students held GPAs that were
so close – merely hundredths of a point apart – that the district felt
that all of them deserved to be honored for their hard work and
accomplishments. And so the Goshen tradition of honoring the six Honor
This tradition runs strong today, and for good
reason. Honor Grads Jason Basri, Chase Bouchard, Alex DePalma, Brigid
Larkin, Courtney Murphy and Nicole Rountree have spent their high school
careers immersed in extra-curricular activities, spent their time
volunteering in their communities, and participated in interscholastic
athletics – all while dedicating themselves to achieving high academic
“Being named an Honor Grad is a nice reward for all
our years of hard work,” said Jason. “I like the idea of having a top
six, since it gives the opportunity for a multitude of people to be
recognized for their efforts.”
“It’s great that it came down to the six of us,”
said Brigid. “We’ve all been in classes together and it feels good to be
happy not only for yourself, but also for each other, since we all know
how hard each of us has worked.”
Although they achieved the highest GPAs in their
class, the six Honor Grads spent a lot of time exploring their interests
while in high school – something they all agree they’ll miss after
“I will definitely miss being part of a
Goshen sports team,” said Courtney. “I began
playing varsity so long ago, and you build such camaraderie with your
teammates. It’s a strange feeling knowing that I won’t be going into
pre-season at the end of the summer; I’ll be leaving for college
“I loved playing the violin with the orchestra and
practicing for competitions and NYSSMA,” said Nicole. “I look forward to
branching out in college, but I’ll miss playing for Goshen.”
The Honor Grads agree that they’ll miss their
friends and the relationships they’ve established, but look forward to
what’s to come after leaving Goshen High School.
“I’ll miss being a part of so many things, but I’m
excited to hone in and focus on my one passion of science and
engineering,” said Alex.
“I look forward to figuring out what I’m best at and
what I want to do for the rest of my life,” added Chase.
It won’t be long before they head out into the
world, taking with them their memories and lessons learned. But each can
recall how their school chose to celebrate their accomplishments
together, which in the words of one grad, “makes you feel really really
Congratulations to the Class of 2012 Honor Grads:
Jason Basri, Chase Bouchard, Alex DePalma, Brigid Larkin, Courtney
Murphy and Nicole Rountree.
Jason took on leadership roles in many of his
extra-curricular activities, serving as president and founder of La
Tertulia, vice president of Mock Trial, treasurer of World Language
Honor Society and co-captain of the varsity tennis team. He was also a
member of varsity cross-country.
In addition to his extra-curricular activities and
athletics, Jason volunteered as an elementary school tutor, helped out
at the Guild of St. Margaret Soup Kitchen and raised money for tsunami
relief in Japan – all while working part-time as a lifeguard. He
received the NYSPHSAA Scholar/Athlete Award, Scholarship for Academic
Excellence and the Orange County Bar Association Achievement Trophy for
Jason will attend Vanderbilt University in the fall
with an undecided major, where he plans to play intramural tennis and
become a member of the Mock Trial Team. He is the son of Ava and Ray
Basri of Goshen.
Throughout high school, Chase was actively involved
with the Music Department. In addition to being crowned this year’s Mr.
GHS, Chase participated in school musicals including Music Man, South
Pacific, Guys and Dolls and The Wizard of Oz, and was a member of
Varsity Chorus and Jazz Chorus. In addition, Chase was a member of
Spanish Club, National Honor Society, World Language Honor Society and
Varsity Club, and played varsity baseball and soccer, where he helped
the team win the Section IX Championship. He was also named a 2012
Scholar-Athlete by the Orange County Interscholastic Athletic
Chase also spent his time helping his community by
volunteering at the Chester Food Bank, Arden Hill Hospital and Goshen
Library. He works at Tina’s Pizzeria in Chester – all while achieving
high honor roll throughout his high school career.
Chase will attend SUNY Binghamton with an undecided
major. He is the son of Jeanne and John Bouchard of Goshen.
Alex is a talented musician, playing the bassoon in
orchestra where he was selected for All-County and Area All-State. He
also played lead saxophone in stage band. In addition, Alex is a member
of National Honor Society, French Club and Science Olympiad, as well as
Varsity Tennis, where he helped the team become Division Champions.
He has contributed more than 250 hours of community
service while volunteering at the Orange Regional Medical Center and
tutoring middle school and high school student, and works for the Goshen
Alex is the recipient of several awards, including
the New York State Band Directors Association Gold Medal for saxophone
and Achievement Awards in OCCC Chemistry, Global History and Geography
and Earth Science. He also received the College of Nanoscale Science and
Engineering (CNSE) Undergraduate Fellowship for Excellence in Nanoscale
Science and Engineering.
Alex will attend SUNY Albany’s College of Nanoscale
Science and Engineering, where he plans to major in nanoscale
engineering and work in the field of photovoltaics. He is the son of
Susan and Philip DePalma of Goshen.
Throughout high school, Brigid involved herself in
several extra-curricular activities including Science Olympiad, Academic
Team, Math Team, Spanish Club and World Language Honor Society for
French, Spanish and Latin. She served as president of the National Honor
Society and French Club, captain of the Mock Trial team.
Brigid volunteered with St. John’s Vocation Bible
School, St. John’s Youth Group Food Pantry, Pets Alive, American Cancer
Society Relay for Life, Chester Cub Scout Camp and tutors with the
National Honor Society. She has worked at What’s the Scoop since 2010.
She was named a Commended Student by the National
Merit Scholarship program, received a Gold Award for the National Latin
Exam and received Awards for Achievement in AP Calculus, French V,
American Law, Intro to Latin and many other subjects throughout her high
Brigid will attend Duke University where she will
major in mathematics with plans to attend law school. She is the
daughter of Nancy and Thomas Larkin of Goshen.
Courtney is a talented athlete, having been named a
2012 Scholar-Athlete by the Orange County Interscholastic Athletic
Association (OCIAA). She was captain of the varsity soccer team – a
member since her freshman year – and captain of the varsity alpine
In addition to athletics, Courtney served as vice
president of the National Honor Society and treasurer of the Varsity
Club, and was a member of the World Language Honor Society. She
volunteered more than 200 hours at the Orange Regional Medical Center as
well as at Pets Alive and peer tutoring while working part-time at Dairy
Delite. Courtney received the John Tether Award, Most Outstanding Player
Award, Leadership Scholarship at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and
maintained the high honor roll throughout high school.
In the fall, Courtney will attend Rensselaer
Polytechnic Institute for chemical engineering where she plans to do
undergraduate research and play varsity soccer. She is the daughter of
Cheryl and Stephen Murphy of Goshen.
Nicole served as both treasurer and president of
Interact Club and was a member of Cultural Diversity, National Honor
Society, World Language Honor Society, Book Club, Math Team and Pep
Band. She was also the manager of the track and field team and played
with the Senior High All-County Orchestra for violin.
Nicole volunteered with numerous organizations and
activities, including Taste of Goshen, Light the Night, Interact, Goshen
Rotary, PALS Club, Students for Seniors, Kids’ Day for Grace and the
Scotchtown Avenue Carnival Night. She received a Gold Medal for the
National Latin Exam and Achievement Awards in French III, Psychology,
Spanish V and other subjects.
Nicole will major in biology at SUNY Geneseo and
plans to become a veterinarian. She is the daughter of Therese and Roy
Rountree of Goshen.
Photo: The Class of 2012
Honor Grads. Back row, from left, Chase Bouchard, Jason Basri, Alex
DePalma. Front row, from left, Nicole Rountree, Brigid Larkin, Courtney