Karr's 2020 Valedictorian, Salutatorian head to LSU

Karr Valedictorian, Salutatorian head to LSU to major in computer science
Posted on 06/26/2020

Valedictorian Jaylon Long and Salutatorian Trace Mitchell separated by 0.01 point 

With just one-one-hundredth of a point separating them, Edna Karr High School’s Valedictorian Jaylon Long and Salutatorian Trace Mitchell are proof that every educational opportunity matters.

 “Being named valedictorian was an honor and also surprising because I thought I was the salutatorian the whole year,” said Long, whose cumulative GPA is 4.13. 

Mitchell, whose cumulative GPA is 4.12 said it felt great to be named salutatorian. 

“It was like all my hard work payed off,” he said.
Both said their families were excited for their sons’ accomplishments and are looking forward to seeing them speak at graduation on July 2, though both graduates admit is not something in their wheelhouse.

“I am very nervous about giving a speech,” Mitchell said.
Long agreed, saying, “Giving a speech was not always something I wanted to do but I’m grateful for the opportunity.”

Long said being the top of his class was never a true goal of his.

“I didn’t go into high school wanting to be No. 1 or No. 2,” he said. “I was motivated and stayed on track because it was a goal of mine to sit on the stage.”

Mitchell said his success was a result of his ability to “overcome my severe procrastination.”

“Thanks to my teachers, parents and friends I was able to stay motivated,” he said, adding that his “absolute favorite” class was with Mr. Hatt. “Even though the work was hard as a whole, it was fun and different almost every day.”

Long said his favorite classes were his AP social studies classes because they were the most fun.

Both Long and Mitchell plan to head to Louisiana State University this fall to major in computer science.

“After college, I want to become a software developer because I like the fact that I can create something out of nothing,” Long said, adding he’s most looking forward to the independence and lifestyle that comes with college.

Mitchell is an aspiring game designer.

“I have been playing video games for most of my life it just felt like a natural fit,” he said.