Meadowcreek HS Celebrates 25th Anniversary
The school celebrated its quarter-century birthday with a huge ceremony.
"We decided to celebrate her life," said Adrienne Wylie, Meadowcreek's activities director. "She loved Meadowcreek." (Read the community's reaction to the tragedy.)
Former and current students, faculty and principals of Meadowcreek attended the celebration, which was held in the school's auditorium. State representatives, Gwinnett County Public School members and locals also showed their support for the school.
A "memory lane," complete with old yearbooks, school uniforms and pompoms, was set up in the hallway outside the auditorium to demonstrate just how far Meadowcreek has come. The school orchestra played during the reception, and top-notch hors d'oeuvres were prepared by the school's nationally known culinary arts team.
"This is a milestone for the school," said Dr. Otis Lane, the assistant principal. "A lot of great students have blessed the halls of this school and are now successful in society."
A ceremony followed the reception, and many of the school members explained how Meadowcreek started and what makes it a great school.
"Our school has grown proudly," said Principal Tommy Welch. "As a community, we have much to be proud of, overcoming obstacles and creating a spherical operation, and a commitment to quality education. That is what Meadowcreek has been about since it first opened its doors, and that's what we have currently vowed for you today."
The ceremony's emcee was Connie Davis, who graduated in the class of 1990. She was among the first students to attend Meadowcreek, and she reminisced on its early days.
She talked about how she and her classmates at Lilburn Middle voted for the name "Meadowcreek" when they were asked what they would like to name the new school, and she joked about how she was glad they didn't name it "Red Plum High," which was surprisingly one of the options.
She recalled a memory of the first pep rally being done in the commons area, because the gym was not ready yet.
"All of the students sat on the floor," Davis said. "I remember students cheering and screaming and clapping, but I never heard one complaint. We were proud of our school, no matter where we had to hold our pep rally."
Gwinnett County Board of Education CEO and Superintendent J. Alvin Wilbanks also had a few remarks, in addition to board Chairwoman Louise Radloff. She, like Davis, remembered those first days of Meadowcreek, and she also compared it to what it is today.
Radloff explained how the community involvement at Meadowcreek made her proud, especially when she attended a Sunday vigil that the school held in honor of the student who died in the car crash.
"I've never known a high school like the Meadowcreek cluster who takes care of their children, all of their children, all of the time," said Radloff. "They're a pretty amazing group."
Pam Gibson, the foreign language chairwoman of the school, was recognized for being at Meadowcreek since its doors first opened.
"I can't imagine being anywhere else," said Gibson.
Susan Tippins, the school's first media specialist, also read former principals' statements about their love for Meadowcreek.
The ceremony ended with the chorus singing the school's alma mater, leaving everyone with Meadowcreek High still on his or her minds when they walked through the doors to go home.