Sherando senior to cherish high school memories

STEPHENS CITY – Sherando High School seniors will remember the last four years as they graduate high school.

STEPHENS CITY – Sherando High School senior Ben Gustafson, 18, of Winchester, said he has really enjoyed his time in high school.

The club and group activities that he has been involved with – including the debate team, the academic team, student government association and class office, the advisory council team and student leadership council, have allowed him to meet new people and form lasting friendships. He said he also has been able to branch out and explore his different interests.

“I was trying to seize those different opportunities as they came up,” he said.

What he will miss when he graduates today is spending time with class or during lunch periods because “those are really the moments that last.”

Gustafson was a peer tutor and a Warrior ambassador who spoke with middle school students about transitioning to high school.  For incoming freshman next fall, he advises them to get involved with different clubs and extracurricular activities to connect with classmates and make the most out of their high school experience.

“It’s a great way to connect yourself with the school and get involved with the Warrior community and then you meet other people you may not have met otherwise, which lead to more lasting friendships,” he said. “I think it’s important for freshman to hit the ground running when they get here, find their interests and pursue them.”

He also advises them to stay organized and focused and don’t let stress get the best of you.

“Keep your mind clear and stick with that tight-knit group of friends,” he said, “and you can always power through.”

After graduating high school Gustafson plans to attend the University of Virginia in the fall and would like to apply to the university’s commerce school and major in finance and management. He is also considering attending law school in the future.

He said he chose business as his field of study because of its applicability into many aspects of life. He added business can be used as an agent of positive societal change and would like to be a part of that.

“I think it would be a good career path and it’s something I’ve been interested in, and there’s a lot of ways you can go with it,” he said.

He added that the business field allows people to “carve your own niche” due to its versatility.

He said his interest in law school comes from his experience on the debate team and noted that he would like to further hone those skills.

After he he said he is considering moving to a major city.

“I like the hustle and bustle,” he said.

Contact staff writer Kaley Toy at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or

Graduation Ceremony

When: 7 p.m. today.

Where: Sherando High School.

Graduates: There are 358 graduation candidates in the Class of 2017.