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Cumberland County Schools Standout Seniors 2022

Sports, clubs help Jack Britt High’s Hyasen Gray make connections

Hard work helps graduate win prestigious scholarship to N.C. State

Meet 2022 Standout Senior, Hyasen Gray from Jack Britt High School

Teachers at Jack Britt High School use many positive attributes to describe Hyasen Gray. She is known for being a student-athlete, artist, hard worker, volunteer and leader.

Now, she is also known as a Park Scholar. The Park Scholarships program provides a four-year scholarship to N.C. State University that is awarded on the basis of accomplishments and potential in scholarship, leadership, service and character.

It’s no easy accomplishment; more than 2,200 qualified candidates apply for about 40 offers. In addition to a full-ride scholarship valued at $116,000 for in-state students, Park Scholars can benefit from early course registration, opportunities for grants, special retreats, mentoring and much more.

Throughout high school, Hyasen has put in the work to earn the title of Park Scholar. She worked many hours for local food trucks and restaurants, but that hasn’t stopped her from getting involved at school. She is a member of the women’s soccer team, playing all four years.

Additionally, she is in the National Honor Society, serving as president for one year. She also was the yearbook editor, a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and a member of the cross-country team.

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“Being a part of the FCA leadership team allowed me to grow in my faith and in my confidence,” Hyasen says. “Soccer and cross-country have led me to some of the most amazing people and have also taught me a lot about myself. I have been pushed to my limits and past, and I've learned the importance of stepping up but also stepping back. I have gained so many memorable experiences and learned so much from each of these activities, and I will forever be grateful to everyone who was there to experience it all with me.”

Hyasen and her brother were raised by a single mother who taught them the value of hard work and motivation. Not only did Hyasen earn the Park Scholarship, but she also earned the Lumbee River EMC Elias Rogers Scholarship and the 2022 USF Scholarship Award. 

“Hyasen is many things — a go-getter, an athlete, a scholar. But her most wonderful attribute is the kindness she shows to others,” says Lori Coleman, AIG consultant. “She will be missed at Jack Britt next year.”

Coleman has made an impression on Hyasen as well.

“Mrs. Coleman has always helped me with anything and everything over these last four years. I could go to her with anything, and she always treated me with patience and kindness. She taught me that the strongest of us are the kindest.”

As Hyasen moves on to the next chapter, she hopes to be remembered for being a good friend who was always willing to talk and offer advice. Although clubs and activities come with many challenges, she would not change anything about her high school experience.

“Get involved,” Hyasen says. “You meet some of the most impactful people in your life outside of your classes. I know it can be a lot to juggle, but there are so many amazing opportunities to be found in clubs and sports. And just being involved really does change how you view high school. Make the best of this experience by doing what you find meaningful.”

Editor’s note: This is one in a series of stories about the Standout Seniors of 2022 as selected by Cumberland County Schools.

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Fayetteville, Cumberland County, Jack Britt High School, graduation, education, Hope Mills