Valedictorian a star in classroom, on track

SPARTA. Ashley Crane plans to major in biology at Colgate University.

Sparta /
| 26 Jun 2024 | 02:13

When Ashley Crane found out halfway through her high school tenure that she was atop her class in grades, being valedictorian became her goal.

Fast forward two years, when she was sitting in class as she checked the final rankings. She had accomplished her goal.

Her excitement couldn’t be held in as she celebrated with her friends across the room. Years of hard work had paid off.

As her time at Sparta High School has come to an end, Crane has fond memories.

Whether it was AP Biology or AP Statistics, many classes and teachers left a mark on her.

“I took biology my sophomore year with (Kenneth) Scognamiglio and I am majoring in biology now because of that so I feel like that class had a huge impact on me,” she said.

With a passion for the sciences, Crane loved everything about school, and history was one of her favorite classes.

“She is exceptional in every way. Ashley is the kind of kid that we hope to see filling our seats come September,” said history teacher Brian Brennan.

For Crane, grades were not the only focus. After her mother suggested that she join the track team in sixth grade, she fell in love with running and became a star.

“I just enjoyed the summer training so much. I loved going out for runs every day,” she said.

To highlight the winter track season, Crane took home silver medals in the 800-, 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs.

Balancing being a star athlete and valedictorian can be tough, but Crane has had no issues. She credits her time management for making it through the four years at the top.

Her focus in the classroom and on the track gave Crane a myriad of college choices. Ultimately, she decided that Colgate is the best place to continue both her academic and athletic career.

She is unsure what career path she will take but hopes to pursue something with her passion for biology.

Being a star athlete and valedictorian is a feat not accomplished by many.

“Don’t be afraid to ask for help,” Crane said when asked her advice to younger students looking to be highly successful in school and sports.

CORRECTION: The photo was incorrect in an earlier version of this article.

She is exceptional in every way. Ashley is the kind of kid that we hope to see filling our seats come September.”
- Brian Brennan, history teacher,
Sparta High School