Dennler is Central’s valedictorian

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Ariel Dennler is the top graduate for Central’s Class of 2018. She will speak at the commencement service Sunday at 2.

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

The valedictorian for the Central Class of 2018 is Ariel Dennler, daughter of Kurt and NiCole Dennler. She is also the granddaughter of Bob and Jane Dennler, Elkader, and Sherry and Dean Bechtel, Waukon. She has a younger brother, Drake, who is a sophomore.
Ariel has been a student since 2009 when the family moved here from Holmen, WI. Kurt owns Elkader Tax and Bookkeeping, and NiCole is a teacher at Upper Iowa University.
It has been a Register tradition to feature the top graduate. Here are answers Ariel gave to our questions.
We congratulate all members of the Class of 2018, who will receive their diplomas during the May 20 commencement ceremony, which begins at 2 p.m. in the high school gym.
What does it mean to you to have achieved the distinction of being the top graduate in the class of 2018?
It is an honor having achieved this accomplishment. I have always been dedicated to my studies. I find that hard work and determination will pay off if you never give up. There are many times I could have given up my goals, but with the support of family, friends, and the Central Community School teachers and staff I was able to achieve them.
What are your outside interests/hobbies?
I love being involved in the community whether it’s at church or a local event. In my free time I like to be with my family and friends. I love to travel, listen to music, watch the Minnesota Vikings, and eat chocolate. My favorite way to spend time is with my two dogs, Shadow and Alivia.
How do you balance studying with everything else?
I utilize my time during school as much as I can. I bring a planner with me everywhere I go. Education has always been a top priority in my life. Governor Kim Reynolds spoke at the Recent Governor Scholar recognition ceremony. She indicated that 99% of the students that were being honored were involved in extracurricular activities. This spoke volumes to me. A successful person needs to be a well-rounded person and a well-rounded person needs to be able to juggle a full schedule.
What have been your favorite and least favorite classes and why?
It is hard to pick a favorite class. I have enjoyed all of the business classes offered at Central. This has really helped me choose my next educational path. My least favorite class would have to be principles of marketing, because it was an online class and I didn’t have the ability to interact with my teacher.
How do you think you’ve benefitted from attending a small school?
Coming from a large class size in Holmen Elementary, I came to appreciate what a small school has to offer. If I have problems with a class, I am able to go up to a teacher and we can work on a one to one basis. Another benefit is that I can get to know each and every one of my classmates. If I would have stayed in Holmen, the graduating class would have been over 300 students.
What are your plans after graduation?
After graduation, I will be attending Mount Mercy University in Cedar Rapids. I will be majoring in finance, and hope to study abroad during college. I am excited to have the opportunity to go to a small university where I know many people around the area have attended.
What advice do you have for other Central students?
Always stayed involved. Not only in school, but in the community. During high school I participated in softball, volleyball, basketball, track and field, large group speech, the play, musical, National Honor Society, Food and Fitness, the wellness committee, youth group, 4-H, and as a class officer. These activities helped me to create friendships that will last a lifetime.
Anything else you’d like to add?
I would like to thank everyone who has gotten me to this point in my life.

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