TCCHS announces 64 AP Scholars

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Thomas County Central High School Advanced Placement program continues its mission to promote academic excellence and college readiness. TCCHS had 64 students receive AP Scholar status for the 2021-2222 school year.

Each year, students may earn one of three titles for academic achievement in their AP exams: AP Scholar, AP Scholar with Honor, and AP Scholar with Distinction (see box). Also, students may earn the first title a previous year and work up to the highest honor in future years.

“These students have consistently demonstrated excellence by performing at the highest level of academic rigor across the Advanced Placement curriculum,” TCCHS AP Coordinator Erin White said. “We are extremely proud of all of them and know that their willingness to take on the challenge of AP will prepare them well for their future endeavors.”


Earning the AP Scholar designation means a student has passed three or more AP exams. TCCHS doubled its 2021 number (18) to 36 in 2022.


AP Scholar Hayden Groom, 17, has three AP classes already on his transcript – including AP Language and Composition and AP World History last year – and currently takes three this school year.


“I feel proud that I have earned the AP Scholar title because it is an important award which shows that I can handle college-level classes,” he said. “I enjoy knowing that the AP classes are helping prepare me for college, which is why other students should take these classes as well.”


The history course is his favorite AP class so far.


“History has always been one of my favorite subjects, and the teacher made the class very interesting,” Groom said. 


The AP Scholar with Honor title indicates a student passed four or more exams and averaged a 3.25 score on all exams. Nine TCCHS youth earned this accolade, including Cayla Martin and Layla Rosario.


“Earning the AP Scholar [with Honor] title makes me feel proud of myself, especially when you consider all of the hard work that goes into taking these classes, participating in them, and then finally taking the exams,” Cayla Martin, 16, said. “It makes me feel like all of my hard work and studying is doing something meaningful.”


Last year, Martin took four AP classes and exams: AP Art History, AP United States History, AP Biology and AP Psychology. For her senior year, she’s taking three: AP Environmental Science, AP Statistics and AP Literature. So by year’s end, Martin’s tally should be 11 completed AP courses, including the exams. Her favorite, so far, is AP Art History.


“This class alone helped me so much in finally deciding what I want to major in college,” she said. “I was excited to go to this class every day because learning about all of these art pieces and where they are tied into history was amazing.”


This experience ties to Martin’s favorite aspect of the AP program.


“What I enjoy the most about AP is that I always feel like I'm learning something that I end up using in other classes or just in my everyday life,” she said. “ I also feel like they've prepared me more for college.”


Junior Layla Rosario felt pride in earning the AP Scholar with Honor title; however, she took the AP exams because she knew she could do well and wanted to gauge just how well.


“Regardless of my grades or scores, I just like to learn, so I wasn't surprised when I earned my title with what I enjoyed learning,” she said. “... So to me, earning the title feels like confirmation and reassurance to continue learning all that I want to and can.”


Rosario appreciates how AP courses surround her with fellow students who try and want to get more from their school experience. 


“Trying is attractive,” Rosario said. “Wanting to know or wanting to be more is what school is for, so you should use every opportunity to try.”


Rosario, 17, has taken four AP courses – seminar, language and world history last year – and has three on this year’s schedule. She most enjoys the variety of courses and in-depth study AP offers. Seminar is Rosario’s favorite AP class because it opens students’ eyes to the world’s issues and helps them view those issues through various lenses to understand their complexity.


“Different perspectives can change your own opinion and help you widen your view of the world,” she said. “It makes you feel much more knowledgeable. While working, you can find solutions and contribute to a cause that you care about or grow to care about. My experience has shown me to think not harder but bigger. It gave me confidence in other areas of my life and skills that help in other classes.”


AP Scholar with Distinction means a student passed five or more exams with an average score of 3.5 or higher on all exams. Currently, it’s the highest AP Scholar rank. TCCHS almost doubled its number of honorees from 2021 (10) with 19 students receiving this designation in 2022.


Current senior Gavin Melnick earned this honor. He’s already completed eight AP courses and has five more on his schedule this year. 


“Earning the AP Scholar [with Distinction] title grants me a feeling of recognition for my hard work and dedication to my classes,” Melnick said.


Last year, he took AP offerings in chemistry, history, biology and psychology – his favorite AP class because it was a subject he’d never taken and found interesting.


Like other AP Scholars, Melnick encourages his peers to consider AP courses because of the potential benefits.


AP provides a level of rigor no other level of class can reach,” Melnick said. “These classes are designed to best prepare me for college-level courses in the future.”


And Rosario advises students not to let the workload deter them from trying AP courses.


“Yes, AP can be hard work, but so are most things in life,” she said. “Don't use ‘too much work’ as an excuse.”


TCCHS Principal Jamie Thompson applauds these AP students’ efforts and how they set a positive example for their peers.


“Our AP scholars are a shining example of what our students can accomplish when they apply themselves to academic excellence,” he said. “These students have set goals and sacrificed to reach them. They impact our entire student body by showing their peers what is possible with hard work.”




Mariah Armster

Hailey Atkinson

Shelby Barlow

Mallory Bustle

Kayla Carr

Carson Chapman

Sara Connell

Whitt Finch

Rowan Garland

Hayden Groom

Marshadron Hollis

Rebekah Horton

Grayson Jones

Warren Kempel

Savana Manning

Ally Moore

Dylan Niks

Grace Parkerson

Wyatt Petrey

Owen Petrey

Caden Reagan

Kason Reynolds

Emmanuel Rios

Jacob Sellers

John Adam Singleton

Jackson Smith

Keaton Stephens

Savannah Taylor

Tessa Thomas

Jordyn Tillman

Veronica Vanlandingham

Alex Ward

Addison Weiss

Brady Whatley

Braxton White

Molly Grace White



Kenneth Baggett

Megan Barnes

Kariana Colon

Cayden Gasque

Morgan Loper

Cayla Martin

Layla Rosario

Ian Thompson

Trista Weeks



Karsyn Bush

Jack Cantrell

Koda Copeland

Norman Desourdy

Ashleigh Dodge

Sarah Edgerton

Jack Emmett

Gaelle Gasque

Brice Hopper

Bishop Jackson

Sofía Jiménez

Caleb Kinneer

Jackson McCorkle

Gavin Melnick

Trace Morales

Claire Pope 

Riley Scoggins

Campbell Smith

Ayden Webb


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