River Valley Commencement exercises were held on May 13, 2012, in the Correctionville gym for 39 seniors. Superintendent Julie DeStigter welcomed the graduates, their families, and friends.
Mr. Don Belson, Guidance Counselor, recognized the seniors for their academic excellence throughout their four years of high school. Emilee Drogmiller, Zoe Linn, and Sara Meyer graduated with honors for having a cumulative grade point average in high school between 3.5 and 3.79.
Graduating with highest honors for having a grade point average of 3.8 or higher were Blane Cullen, Katie Foley, Kari Ludvigson, Kim Niehaus, and Emily Reinking.
The Silver Cord Program was started to provide students with opportunities to develop to their fullest potential and to become contributors to society by encouraging them to interact positively within their communities and with their classmates. Students in Silver Cord have to complete at least 40 hours of volunteer service per year in various activities. Zak Gander, Kim Niehaus, Amber Wilen, and Chris Witt were honored with a silver cord and pin for their efforts.
Mr. Belson then recognized the 11 seniors who have been members of National Honor Society while students at River Valley. Those seniors were Lexie Chester, Tanner Cobb, Blane Cullen, Emilee Drogmiller, Katie Foley, Katie Foley, Kari Ludvigson, Sara Meyer, Kim Niehaus, Emily Reinking, Amber Wilen, and Chris Witt.
Students receiving individual scholarships/awards were then recognized:
Lexie Chester- Iowa Central Community College Academic Scholarship and Knights of Columbus Scholarship
Tanner Cobb- Buena Vista Merit Award and the Buena Vista Founders Award
Emilee Drogmiler- Augustana Presidential Scholarship, Augustana Early Filers Scholarship, Augustana Travelers Scholarship, Merrill High School Alumni Association Scholarship
Katie Foley ñ Oral Roberts Whole Person Scholarship.
Shelbee Hill- Iowa Central Community College Scholarship
Wilbur Hoy - Western Iowa Tech Community College Now Scholarship.
Zoe Linn - Iowa State University Presidential Scholarship and Iowa State University Engineering Scholarship
Kari Ludvigson- Iowa State Academic Recognition Award, Betty C. Kirkbridge Keller Scholarship, Benjamin Mericle Family Fund Scholarship, and the Grinnell Mutual/Paul Larson Insurance Road to Success Scholarship
Phillip Martin- National Financial Capability Challenge Certificate of Recognition
Sara Meyer- First Presbyterian Church Scholarship, Western Iowa Tech Community College Now Scholarship and Western Iowa Tech President's Scholarship
Austin Moeller- Buena Vista Founder's Award, Buena Vista Merit Award, and Silver Creek United Methodist Church Scholarship
Kim Niehaus - Buena Vista Founder's Award, Buena Vista President's Scholarship, Buena Vista Employee Tuition Grant, KCAU Best of the Class, and Governor's Scholar Award
Emily Reinking- Iowa Farm Bureau Federation Scholarship, Western Iowa Tech Community College Now Scholarship, Western Iowa Tech President's Scholarship, Western Iowa Tech Foundation Scholarship
Casey Reyman- Iowa Central Community College Student Merit Scholarship
Skylar Shever- Iowa Central Community College Baseball Scholarship, Iowa Central Community College Diesel Scholarship
Brittny Shropshire- Northern Iowa Area Community College Track Scholarship
Jasmine Smith- Iowa Central Community College Student Merit Scholarship, Bethlehem Lutheran Church Swanson Scholarship
Amber Wilen- Western Iowa Tech Community College President's Scholarship, Western Iowa Tech College Now Scholarship
Christopher Witt- Western Iowa Tech College Now Scholarship, Western Iowa Tech Foundation Scholarship
Local scholarships and awards were then presented:
Correctionville Health Care Corporation: Haley Mandicino and Shelbee Hill
Correctionville Town and Country Women's Club: Brittany Hunwardsen
Masonic-Eastern Star: Tanner Cobb and Chris Witt
P.E.O. Scholarship: Emilee Drogmiller
Lois Volkert Memorial Scholarship: Kim Niehaus
Western Iowa Tech Board Scholarship: Sara Meyer and Emily Reinking
Friends of River Valley Scholarship: Lexie Chester, Emilee Drogmiller, Austin Moeller, and Kim Niehaus
Sherman Memorial Scholarship: Emilee Drogmiller
Duvone "Bonnie" Law Memorial Scholarship: Drew Payne
Pilot Rock Dar Educational Scholarship: Chris Witt
Linn Memorial Scholarship: Blane Cullen
Woodbury County American Bar Association Citizenship Award: Katie Foley
Kim Niehaus and Katie Foley were the speakers for the class. Following the senior speakers, the diplomas were presented by board president, Scott Carnes.