The Transylvania Times -

RHS Seniors Ready To Expand Their Horizons


June 3, 2019

Joshua Voris and Luke Stewart have been classmates since elementary school, but now the Rosman High seniors are ready to graduate and expand their horizons.

Voris, who is senior class president and student body president, will be attending Clemson University next fall on an Army ROTC scholarship.

Stewart, who has played on the Tiger football, basketball and baseball teams, will be playing football for Averett University in Danville, Va. this fall.

“They’re actually in Brevard College’s conference,” said Stewart, who added the two teams will play in Brevard on Nov. 9. “I’m very excited.”

At Averett, Stewart plans to major in sports management and then work in a team’s front office.

Voris plans to major in biology. Once he gets out of the military, he would like to be either a zoologist or park ranger in the West. He already has traveled to Bozeman, Mont., and Yellowstone National Park and enjoyed his time there.

“They’ve got real mountains out there,” he laughed.

Both seniors said they thought Rosman High has helped prepare them for college and the real world.

Stewart said one benefit of attending RHS is that students are able to develop close relationships with their teachers, as well as having a diverse group of friends. He said Averett is like Rosman in that his largest class would have 25 students.

“That’s part of the reason I picked it,” said Stewart of Averett. “You can still have a personal relationship with your professor.”

Stewart mentioned four teachers who had a great influence on him.

Linda Peeples, his senior English teacher, talked him into taking a theatre class, which forced him out of his comfort zone

“I fell in love with it,” he said. “I’m actually going to take some theater classes in college.”

He said Peeples wants her students to succeed and would do whatever she could to help them be successful.

“She has dedicated a lot to this school,” Stewart said.

Stewart said Julie Queen, whom he had for Spanish I and II and Character Development, brought in motivational speakers and helped set up the Senior Trip with Peeples.

“She’s always there for kids. She’s another one that’s strict and hard on you, but she’s very caring,” said Stewart.

Stewart said history teacher John McCarson, who teaches American History I and II, taught the subject in a manner that made history easy to understand.

He added that McCarson also taught some of the males how to tie a tie.

“He helps you with stuff like that,” said Stewart.

Stewart said that his health science teacher, Stephanie Ramsey, pushed the students and had such high expectations that when her students took the standardized vocational aptitude tests at the end of the year, they were easier than her classroom tests.

“She pushed you. She’s hard on you, but if you ever need anything, she’s there,” said Stewart.

Voris said his favorite teacher was Nancy Sanders because she taught him biology and anatomy.

“That’s one of the reasons I’m going to major in biology,” Voris said.

He also said that Sanders was a nice person who was always available.

“If you needed anything, you could always go to her,” said Voris.

Voris also said ROTC helped him to talk to large groups of people.

“I was outgoing. I just wouldn’t have gone out of my way to talk to people,” said Voris.

Both said being pushed out of their comfort zones has benefited them, and they and their classmates benefited greatly from their Senior Trip to New York City and Washington, D.C.

“Rosman is very secluded and isolated,” said Voris. “You get out in a big city and up North and you get all of these different opinions from people. It exposes you to what you’ll be facing in the world. Not everybody’s going to be like you and have the same mind set and look the same.”

“It’s not just Rosman; it’s Western North Carolina,” said Stewart about being secluded. “The first time you leave Rosman and Western North Carolina is different.”

He said getting out of Rosman is important because it allows students to know about opportunities elsewhere and prepares them a little if they want to live somewhere else.

“You already know a little bit about the world,” said Stewart.

He said going to New York City and Washington, D.C. “was eye opening,” but he was more prepared than some of his classmates because he had been to New Orleans twice for football camp.

Since both of Voris’s grandfathers served in the military and he has received an ROTC scholarship, he was interested in and impressed by Arlington National Cemetery.

Voris liked that no matter what rank a person had – private, corporal or general – they were all buried together and they all had the same kind of headstone.

“At Arlington you’d see this three-star general and then you’d see a private and they’d have the exact same gravestone,” said Voris. “That’s really cool that it doesn’t matter how high up you reach in rank, you’re still respected as a soldier no matter what.”

Stewart said visiting the memorial at the former site of the Twin Towers was emotional.

“You’ll see family members just start crying and place roses. It’s like a part of them is still missing. Seeing that really upset me,” said Stewart. “That was the saddest part of the whole trip.”

Both Stewart and Voris said the Senior Trip and their other experiences in high school have prepared them for college and life away from Rosman.

“You’re an adult now; a new chapter opens up,” said Stewart. “I feel like I’m ready for it.”

“I’m ready to explore the world,” said Voris.


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