Education

South Carolina teen is third member of family to graduate with remarkable achievement

Lower Richland High School

A Richland County teenager is going to graduate having accomplished a rare feat.

When Zhariah Walker participates in Lower Richland High’s commencement ceremony on June 5, she will graduate with perfect attendance, the South Carolina school said Wednesday in a news release.

Not just for her senior year, but for 12 years of school, according to the news release.

What sets the teenager’s accomplishment apart is the fact that Walker is the third member of her immediate family to graduate with a perfect attendance record, the school said.

Walker’s mother, Tracee, and older brother Jamal never missed a single day of school, according to the news release.

Walker said she was inspired by those achievements.

“The bar was set high, and I was determined to reach it,” she said in the news release.

In addition to never missing a day of school, the teen also excelled in the classroom.

Walker is a Richland One Academic All-Star, meaning she had at least a 3.5 GPA, ranked in the top 10 percent of her senior class and had no grade lower than a C for any subject taken for high school credit, Richland One School District spokeswoman Edith Caudle said in an interview with The State.

She told the school that “hard work and perseverance are synonymous and that anything worth having requires resilience,” according to the news release.

The Columbia-area high school’s graduation will actually be the second commencement ceremony Walker will participate in this spring.

She was one of eight Lower Richland students to take college-level courses at Midlands Tech this year, Caudle said. In addition to receiving college credit, Walker also participated in Midlands Tech’s graduation ceremony, wearing a gown and mortarboard with tassels, according to Caudle.

Walker has not announced where she is going to college, but intends to major in business administration, according to the news release.

Noah Feit is a Real Time reporter with The State and McClatchy Carolinas Regional Team. The award-winning journalist has worked for multiple newspapers since starting his career in 1999.
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