Amber Wright, Edwin Flores Caballero and Makenna West from left to right.

3 D38 Students recognized by Gazette for being among the ‘Best and Brightest’

Each year the Colorado Springs Gazette and its foundation honor 20 graduating seniors across the Pikes Peak Region who have excelled academically while making contributions to their schools and communities. For the D38 Class of 2022, three students are among those being honored.

Amber Wright and Makenna West, of Palmer Ridge High School and Edwin Flores-Caballero, of Lewis-Palmer High School, each received a surprise visit at school in the spring semester, receiving a plaque, as well as a scholarship.

Amber Wright

Wright was the sole leader of a blood drive in October of her senior year. The initial goal was to collect 33 units, but with Wright’s leadership, 51 units were collected.

Sarah Obarski, who had been a donor recruitment representative for Vitalant blood bank, had written a recommendation letter for Wright outlining her accomplishments. She wrote that she had worked for various corporations, military installations and schools, but the Palmer Ridge High School events were among the best organized she had encountered.

“I have yet to work with a high school student whose natural leadership skills and determination for excellence are equivocal,” Obarski wrote.

Read a full story here.

Edwin Flores Caballero

Lewis-Palmer High School English and ceramics teacher Brian Barkey, who is also the soccer coach, recognized several qualities in the young man.

“First, he was incredibly humble and grateful for the opportunity to be away from the trauma he experienced in Honduras. As part of that, he worked exceptionally hard to learn to speak English. The second thing we learned is how much Edwin loves soccer.

“His work is exemplary, reflecting care and the same type of passion he shows on the soccer field.”

Read a full story here.

Makenna West

As a D38 Aliroum De Award recipient, West earned recognition from many, including Brandy Doan, a special education teacher at PRHS.

“She is an exceptionally talented student,” said Doan, who noted that Makenna volunteered to work in and out of school with the most significantly impacted students.

“She sets aside disability to engage them as equals and ensures their unique needs aren’t neglected,” Doan said. “She is compassionate and has the remarkable ability to honor and value each student and build long-lasting relationships.”

Read a full story here.

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