McLennan Community College President Johnette McKown recognized outstanding staff members in April with the Extra Mile Award. Those honored were (from left) Tamara Culver, professor in criminal justice; Clayton Williams, chief of police; Michelle Powell, Highlander Undergraduate Research Institute director and part-time instructor in child studies and education; Jacinda Estelle, Simulation Lab manager, associate degree nursing; Kim Patterson, executive director of the MCC Foundation; Starlen Roddy, success coach at Completion Center; Bryan Mohan, representative of the gounds maintenance crew; Candice Pena, admissions technician in student admissions; Sherry Campbell, library resources technician in library services; Maria Hernandez, custodian in custodial services; and Lesley Plemons, program director and professor in health information technology. Not pictured is Teri Barnes, a professor in mathematics.

Dillon Dunn, of Bellmead, will join outstanding junior high school students from across the nation this summer to take part in an academic and career-oriented development experience, the Junior National Young Leaders Conference in Washington, D.C.

Waco-McLennan County Young Lawyers Association President Stephen Rispoli, the assistant dean at Baylor Law School, presented the Young Lawyers Awards May 10 at the Waco-McLennan County Bar Association luncheon in the press box at McLane Stadium.

The Heart O’ Texas Fair & Rodeo awarded 48 scholarships totaling $153,000 to Central Texas students for the 2018-19 academic year. It is the largest amount the organization has given for academic scholarships to date.

Claire Cook, a 2015 graduate of West High School, was recently chosen by a University of Arizona College of Science faculty committee to receive the overall Excellence in Undergraduate Research Award from among 12 departmental award recipients.

Classical Conversations home-school students were recognized as Memory Masters for 2019 at their campuses. To earn Memory Master recognition, each student was required to recite from memory with 100 percent accuracy more than 400 facts.

Robinson High School senior Chloe Walker signed a commitment to dance at Tyler Junior College after being selected to the 73rd line of the Apache Belles. She is the daughter of xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx. Pictured with her are Rockettes director Michelle Gundersen and principal Dr. Lamar Collins.

The La Vega ISD Teachers of the Year for 2019 were honored with a limo ride to lunch on May 10 as part of their special day of recognition. Each was picked up at their respective campus and taken to Ridgewood Country Club to have lunch with the board president and the executive team. The limo was sponsored by the Bellmead Chamber of Commerce, Legacy Limousines and La Vega ISD. Lunch was provided by American Bank. Shown here are (from left): Superintendent Dr. Sharon M. Shields, LaRonda Benson from La Vega Intermediate H.P. Miles Campus, Kim Henderson from La Vega Elementary School, Kenneth Maedgen from La Vega Junior High George Dixon Campus, Veronica Olvera from La Vega Primary Phil Bancale Campus, Shelly Trevino from La Vega High School, and Henry C. Jennings, president of the board of trustees.

Two University High School theater students, Leslie Cazares, a senior, and Cassady Copas, a junior, qualified for the International Thespian Society’s (ITS) national competition, the International Thespian Festival, to be held June 24-29 in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Midway High School’s Business Professionals of America students competed for national titles recently in Anaheim, California, and came away with three first-place finishes.

Congressman Bill Flores presented the TX-17 Congressional Veteran Commendation to McLennan County Veterans Service Officer Steve Hernandez at the Heart of Texas Veterans One Stop. Baylor Law nominated Hernandez for the award for his long-running partnership with its Veterans Clinic, for his work in founding the One Stop, and for his advocacy in establishing the veterans treatment court in McLennan County. The photograph here was taken at a separate event. Pictured are (from left) Josh Borderud, clinic director; professor Bridget Fuselier, clinic founder; Congressman Bill Flores, Steve Hernandez and Yvette Marascia, clinic legal assistant.

The La Vega ISD Child Nutrition Department held its sixth annual Future Chef Culinary Competition at the La Vega Intermediate School H.P. Miles Campus. Each student who competed had a La Vega High School student mentor who participates in the culinary program at the high school. The school district incorporates the winning entry into its cafeteria menus. The winners are (from left) third place, Zeria Myles Marzae (fifth grade) and mentor Timothy Carr, “Pink Stuff;” first place, Giavanna Zuniga (sixth grader) and mentor Jaelyn Maladdie, “Banana Granola Delights;” and second place, Areli Ortiz (fifth grade) and mentor Juana Delafuente, “Energy Bites.”

Baylor University honored seven staff members for outstanding service and pursuit of excellence in their work with the presentation of Outstanding Staff Awards, including the BaylorPLUS Salute and inaugural Distinguished Staff Leadership Awards, during the spring staff forum in the Cashion Academic Center.

Gaynor I. Yancey, professor of social work, Master Teacher and director of the Center for Church and Community Impact at Baylor University’s Diana R. Garland School of Social Work, was honored April 12 during the annual Academic Honors Convocation as the 2019 Cornelia Marschall Smith Professor of the Year.

A large crowd of Stilwell Retirement residents and family members enjoyed two piano and violin recitals by the students of Tabitha Hymer this spring.

The Spanish IV students from Lorena High School researched animals at the Cameron Park Zoo and provided a tour March 29 of the zoo in Spanish to a group of Lorena primary students for whom Spanish is their native language. The Spanish IV students are Holland Bankston, Raven Bright, Lauren Caldwell, Raley DeLeon, Lorene Keeland, Bradley King, Kimberly Kolls, Macy Kunze, Madison Pierce, Calvin Small, Mabry Strauch, Madison Thompson and Madelyn Treat. The primary students are Emiliano Escobedo, Alek Flores, Katrina García, Adriana Gonzáles-Loredo, Raquel Gonzáles-Loredo, Itzel Hernández-Martínez, Ashley Loredo, Sara Martínez-Gómez, Ulises Melendez, Alison Monreal and Lázaro Monreal.

Twelve pieces created by Vanguard College Preparatory School art students will compete at the state Visual Arts Scholastic Event in San Marcos Friday and Saturday.

The Midway High School art department took 30 students to Harker Heights High School on Feb. 16 to compete in the annual Texas Art Education Association Visual Arts Scholastic regional and area Event.

The Score, a flagship newsletter for the American Psychological Association (APA) Division 5, the Division of Quantitative and Qualitative Methods, dedicated a recent issue solely to Roger E. Kirk, Ph.D., the Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Statistics and Master Teacher at Baylor University, in celebration of 60 years in the statistics field and his formal retirement at the end of the spring semester.

Engineman 3rd Class Khalil Shelton, from Waco, assigned to USS Gerald R. Ford’s reactor department, receives an enlisted surface warfare specialist certificate from Cmdr. Emily Bassett, the ship’s reactor officer, during an awards-at-quarters ceremony in the ship’s reactor training classroom. Ford is undergoing its post-shakedown availability at Huntington Ingalls Industries-Newport News Shipbuilding.

The Education Service Center (ESC) Region 12 Technology Foundation recently awarded school districts with nearly $53,000 in grant funds to support educational technology programs.

Ruby Strange, the longtime secretary for former McLennan County Sheriff Jack Harwell, turned 107 on March 25. She celebrated her birthday with current McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara and Harwell’s former chief deputy, Dan Weyenburg, at Heartis Senior Living.

The ninth annual “Spring Onto Summer Food Drive” will take place Saturday and is designed to help local food pantries better meet the increased demand for supplemental food that is expected during the summer — a time when there is also a decrease in food and monetary donations to the organizations.

Live Oak Classical School seniors Monica Colón and Carter Mencken were recognized this spring as National Merit Finalists for their high scores on the National Merit Preliminary SAT taken during their junior years.

Education Service Center (ESC) Region 12 Technology Foundation recently awarded six school districts with nearly $53,000 in grant funds to support educational technology programs.

China Spring Middle School seventh-grader Timmy Reid’s innovative idea for keeping a pacemaker operating without batteries won first place in his category at the Texas Science and Engineering Fair.