Prihoda, Reed plan future at A&M

Valedictorian Rowan Prihoda and Salutatorian Jennifer Reed

Graduating at the top of their class was something both Fairfield students planned since junior high. Both are also planning to attend Texas A&M in the fall. Rowan Prihoda was named FHS' Class of 2016 Valedictorian with a 5.62 GPA, while Salutatorian Jennifer Reed earned a 5.50.
Prihoda plans to earn his degree in computer electrical engineering at A&M. “I just want to get out into the workforce, make a living, start a family,” said the senior. “Just go through life.”
Throughout his high school career, Prihoda earned numerous academic achievements including National Merit, UIL state math, and a first place at the state UIL Solo/Ensemble in band.
He was also named Student of the Year at January's Chamber of Commerce banquet, a title he says “caught him unexpectedly.”
“It was very surprising to be named student of the year,” he said.
The Prihoda family has quite a legacy behind them. Both parents were engineers and moved their family from Scotland to Fairfield in 2009. Rowan is the third child to graduate at the top of his class – sister, Morgan was valedictorian in 2013 and brother, Zachary was salutatorian in 2012.
Salutatorian Jennifer Reed says she felt accomplished when her title was announced. “It's something I wanted for a long time,” she said. “I was glad to make my family proud.”
Prihoda says his favorite classes are chemistry with Mr. Posey, physics with Ms. Wade, calculus with Mrs. Welch, and Dual Credit English with Mr. Whitaker.
Reed will earn her degree in biomedical science, after which she plans to attend medical school and become a surgeon.
Reed's cousin – also an FHS graduate – is a doctor and Reed's career path inspiration. “Deciding on a career path has been difficult,” she said. “My cousin is a doctor and it's always been at the back of my mind.”
Although Reed is ultimately happy with her earned title, she was originally working towards the valedictorian spot. “I knew I wanted to be top of my class,” she said. “When I set goals I'm pretty diligent.”
Reed says when she was in fourth grade she told her dad she wanted to be valedictorian after hearing a cousin's salutatorian speech. Reed also credits her cousin, FHS Class of 1993 valedictorian Matt Bonner as her inspiration.
She ran state in Cross Country – her team placed fourth in the event – during her freshman year, and she was named Newcomer of the Year when she was a sophomore.

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