BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) - A Bay High School student has a very bright future ahead of her.
Avery Lyons stays busy balancing academics, extracurricular activities and work, and now, she’s reaping the rewards as she prepares for her next step in life, college.
Even during her senior year, the 4.0 senior is staying on top of her game.
“I have AP economics and AP English 4. I do a hybrid class at PRCC for French. I have online college calculus and online AP chemistry,” she explained.
That’s just what she takes on during school hours. Her list of extracurricular activities is pretty impressive, too.
“The big one is powerlifting. We just qualified for south state,” Lyons said. “I’ve been in ROTC for 8 semesters now, and I am the director of operations in there. So, I’m the highest ranking as a cadet lieutenant colonel."
Lyons is also a member of the National Honor Society, a school ambassador and was recently nominated as a Difference Maker. During her sophomore year, Lyons became involved with Arts for Animals, which has raised around $3,000 to date for the Hancock County Animal Shelter.
That’s just to name a few of Lyon’s accomplishments, not to mention the two part-time jobs she works. So, it should come as no surprise that her application stood out among thousands of others applying to the Ivy League’s Yale University and the prestigious Duke University.
“That was like a really big deal, just to have as something that was potential for me to go to,” said Lyons.
Avery only applied to Duke and Yale as back ups, just in case she wasn’t accepted to her top choice: the U.S. Naval Academy. It has an acceptance rate of just nine percent. So, when she found out she was part of that nine percent, Avery was ecstatic.
“It’s a dream come true. When I set foot on the campus, I knew there was no where else I wanted to go,” she said.
Her acceptance to the Naval Academy pushes her one step closer to her dream career of becoming a Marine Corps helicopter pilot. She’s following in similar footsteps as one of her biggest role models, her uncle.
“He is so proud of everything the military holds, what it stands for, and his part in it. And I want to be part of it too," she said.
She hopes her success will inspire her peers.
“It’s good to know that people see that I did it, so they think that they have a chance also, and it gives them a reason to apply,” said Lyons.
And she says it’s a reminder of why it’s important to always put in 110 percent.
“Just like everything I’ve done all high school was worth it, like I got what I wanted,” she said.
And for that, Avery knows she can hold her head high.
A nice benefit of attending the Naval Academy, the Navy pays 100 percent of tuition and room and board for all students in return for five years of active duty service after graduation.