St. Thomas High School valedictorian Grant McCoy is a Katy resident who has attended the private school since his freshman year.
He found out he was valedictorian on April 24 when Father James Murphy, the high school’s president, showed up at his door with a sign for the yard.
“I was very surprised,” McCoy said. “It was actually my dad’s birthday that day and my sister had told me there was a surprise coming for him. But when I opened the door it was actually Father Murphy coming to surprise me. It was really cool, too, because Father Murphy had set it all up with my sister so even my parents were surprised.”
McCoy said some of his favorite classes have been his Advanced Placement Spanish and History classes.
“I’ve had a lot of really good teachers over my four years, so it’s hard to pick a few, but one that stands out is Mr. (Daniel) Hernandez, my Spanish teacher for Spanish 2 and 3,” he said. “He was actually my confirmation sponsor as well. He wrote one of my letters of recommendation and has become as close as family.”
McCoy also played basketball up until the start of his junior year and played golf all four years.
Like St. Pius X, St Thomas is also going to have graduation at the drive-in theater in Hockley. St. Thomas’ ceremony is scheduled for Sunday.
“I think it’s a really cool idea to be able to get everyone there as well as select family and friends,” McCoy said. “I do have a few points that I want to hit (in my speech) and memories that I want to relive with my class.”
In the fall, McCoy will attend Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. He will be a Dean’s Fellow in the Heider College of Business.
Salutatorian Grayson Drinkard is also from the greater Katy area and has been at St. Thomas for four years.
His favorite teachers were Claire Conboy and Judy Granberry, who teach chemistry and English, respectively.
“They were (favorites) because I developed a personal connection with them,” Drinkard said.
During his time at St. Thomas, Drinkard was a member of student council and was an “Eagle Ambassador” who gave school tours to prospective students. As a senior leader, Drinkard guided freshman in assimilating to high school.
He participated in a variety of academic competitions organized by the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS).
“I have done spelling, literary criticism, and I was supposed to do number sense and advanced math this year,” he said.
Drinkard ran track and played basketball, rugby and soccer during high school.
He will attend the University of Texas at Austin and wants to become an electrical engineer.