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Salutatorian finds strength in 2020 challenge

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Navasota High School Salutatorian Weston Finke is Navasota born and raised, and Navasota proud! But he’ll leave Rattler country soon to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering at Texas A&M University and the ultimate goal of owning his own business. 

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    EXAMINER PHOTO BY ERICA GRIFALDO

Navasota High School Salutatorian Weston Finke is Navasota born and raised, and Navasota proud! But he’ll leave Rattler country soon to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering at Texas A&M University and the ultimate goal of owning his own business. Finke’s hard work has been rewarded with scholarships from Ducks Unlimited and MidSouth Synergy.

 

As president of the National Honor Society, a member of Student Council, Library Club, Spanish Club, plus his involvement with the LEO Club and his studies, it would seem Finke has little free time. Adept at time management, his busy schedule also includes part-time work at Stonecroft Marketplace, a job he “really enjoys.”

During Finke’s freshman year, he recognized his limitations on the gridiron. He traded the pigskin for a golf club and found his passion, but his hopes of following in his sister’s footsteps and playing in the UIL State Golf Tournament became a casualty of COVID-19.

By his own admission, Finke was not the kind of student who stood on the sidelines when it came to school spirit! He also understands the bonds that develop and opportunities that present themselves from involvement.

 

Finke said of the decorating and pep rally traditions, “I’m really glad I took advantage of them. I think having that school spirit and the pep rallies is one of my best memories.”

 

He added, “It can really take you places when people see you have that spirit.”

 

That enthusiasm extends into the classroom as well. Finke is confident that his “small town” education has prepared him well.

He said, “School is what you make of it. I love Navasota! I love all the teachers. I feel like they did a great job preparing me. Because it’s a small town, you’re able to do a lot of things as far as extracurricular activities, you know a lot of people, and that’s nice.” 

 

Finke is proud of the camaraderie of the Class of 2020. For the first time in a number of years, a majority of the “Top Ten” are male students. He credits their friendly competition for that accomplishment, and for his own success.

Finke said, “It makes you work super, super hard.”

 

Because of COVID-19, the Class of 2020 nationwide has faced an education challenge unlike any since World War II.

Finke said, “None of us thought we’d be doing online classes the last nine weeks of school. It’s that transition from class to school, you have to make it a priority to do your work because it can catch up to you.”

 

The young man who always looks on the bright side acknowledged that the days when events like the prom were scheduled, “can get to you,” and described his essay on his high school career as “sad for sure.” 

 

But with that Rattler spirit, Finke added, “It will only make us stronger.”