Best in class: Student musicians show their prowess

• Four Fayette County music students were among the 25 selected to participate in the 2015-2016 Atlanta Symphony Orchestra's Talent Development Program for African-American and Latino classical music students. They recently performed recitals at the Woodruff Arts Center's Rich Theatre as a culmination of their yearlong practice and dedication. The students are Alisha Zamore, clarinet, McIntosh High; Errol Rhoden III, tuba, Fayette County High; Triniti Rives, clarinet, Fayette County High; and Wilfred Farquharson, viola, Fayette County High. Zamore performed "Sonata No. 2" by Brahms, Rhoden performed "Concerto" by Vaughan Williams, Rives performed Sonata for Clarinet and Piano by Saint-Saens, and Farquharson performed Marchenbilder by Schumann.

McIntosh High clarinetist Alisha Zamore is one of six high school musicians in the world selected to advance to the semifinal round of the International Clarinet Association's High School Solo Competition. The final round of competition will be a live performance at ClarinetFest 2016 in Lawrence, Kansas August 3-7. Prizes include $1,000 for first place, $750 for second place, and $500 for third place.

• A team of four students from the Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology in Lawrenceville were crowned state mathematics champions in the 40th annual state mathematics tournament April 30 in Macon. The GSMST team placed first overall. Team members Timothy Gieseking, Julius Tao, Jason Fan and Albert Kim were coached by GSMST mathematics teacher Robin Miles. Timothy Gieseking earned top honors as the individual state math tournament winner. Questions in the competition come from topics in the standard high school curriculum, up to calculus, as well as topics not traditionally found in the curriculum, such as number theory and combinatorics. The Georgia Council of Teachers of Mathematics sponsors the annual state math championship.

Angel Esquivel won the 2016 Distinguished Student Award given by Gwinnett Technical College faculty and staff. The award recognizes academic achievement and qualities including leadership, dependability, and cooperation. Other finalists were Amber Whilhite, Caryn Ridenour, Jennifer Miller, Margaret Megaro and Kristen Ferreira.

• A team from Vantage Point Education, a small non-traditional school in Sugar Hill, won the state Envirothon competition, a program of the National Conservation Foundation, and will be the only Georgia team going to the North American Envirothon competition in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada July 24 –29. Team members are Phillip Alexander, John Deitsch, Cooper Foster, Connor Horne and Ryan Jones. Envirothon combines in-class and hands-on environmental education and the competition tests students on four core subjects: aquatic ecology, forestry, soils and land use, and wildlife; along with a fifth subtopic that focuses on relevant environmental issues. Approximately 500,000 students from forty-five United States and nine Canadian provinces/territories participate.