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Making a difference and finishing strong (1)
Making a difference and finishing strong
Posted on 05/26/2017

Julianna Hamilton, a senior at Walker High School, was new to the Puyallup School District at the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year. Today she is preparing for her graduation from the Puyallup School District this June.

She is one of more than 1,750 seniors throughout the district who are making plans for the future, yet whose lives are busy with school work and activities as they prepare for graduation.

Hamilton was recognized at the Puyallup School District Board Meeting on May 15 as one of 70 outstanding seniors who will be graduating in June. Students were identified by staff for a variety of reasons which include characteristics such as work ethic, leadership, encouragement of others, resilience, academic achievement, and positive influence.

After graduation, Hamilton is planning to attend Pierce College and eventually transfer to the Art Institute of Seattle to study fashion design. She also hopes someday to write her own paranormal fiction book as well as do her own illustrations.

Hamilton proudly shared about her four art pieces that had recently been displayed at the Honoring Cultures visual art display at the Washington State Spring Fair. Out of the four pieces of art, one took second place and the other three took first place.

"Ms. Taylor helped me find how much I love art and how I can make an idea actually come to life," she explained.

Hamilton next to bell tower

Allison Taylor, teacher at Walker High School, celebrated her by saying "Julianna has an extraordinary

imagination that translates into her whimsical and beautiful art. She has a natural talent that is rare to come by, and it's been a wonderful experience witnessing her talent unfold in my classroom. Her talent and kind personality make her a wonderful part of the Walker High School family."

Hamilton attributed her success at Walker High School to the kind and caring attitudes of those at Walker who helped her develop positive relationships with staff.

"I came into Walker not knowing if I would graduate this June, so to go from one end of the spectrum to the other is crazy but also very rewarding," Hamilton explained.

Outside of school, she volunteers for the Sumner Library Buddy Readers program which helps kindergarten and first-grade students by reading to them, teaching them a new craft, or helping them with reading homework.

"She has a big heart and is willing to lend a helping hand whenever needed," explained Anastasia Church, teacher at Walker High School. "In class, she goes over and above to produce a quality product. She is always willing to put in the extra time and effort to make sure the job is done right and well."

Hamilton also spends her time off with her family participating in the Annual Tacoma Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Walk for Team B-RAD, supporting her brother-in-law who has MS.

When asked what advice she would give to her younger sister about school, who will be a senior in the next couple years, she said, "Stay focused and don't get involved in drama. High school can be very dramatic, and drama can be very distracting. You have to take a step back and focus on why you are really here which is to graduate so we can be as successful as possible in the future."

Devin Konsmo
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