A Triple Threat at OCHS

March 22nd, 2015 | By Gary No Comments


Amongst high school students, Alyssa Beckstead is what I would call a ‘triple threat’ (to borrow a term from musical theater). As a senior at Oconee County High School, Alyssa excels in athletics, academics, and the arts.

Alyssa started her athletic career at OCHS her freshman year on the cross country team and then joined the track team her junior year. She runs the 800-meter, one-mile and two-mile distances. Obviously she loves running and plans to do so for a lifetime, but right now she is focused on finishing strong her senior year and possibly joining the UGA cross country team next year. Her OCHS long distance coach Kendra Houghton says, “Alyssa takes her work and performance very seriously and always aims to put in more than enough work to build confidence for a successful competition performance.  She is a great listener, ideal to coach because she soaks up instruction.” OCHS track and field coach Joshua Mize adds, “Alyssa is currently growing into a mentor of our younger athletes. She is kind and compassionate and one of the most respectful and cheerful athletes I can recall coaching.”

Alyssa says she has learned two important lessons as a student athlete, saying, “I have to manage my time carefully and I can go a lot further than I think I can.” She has certainly mastered, as evidenced when you look at the rest of her activities and accomplishments. Alyssa is one the best and brightest students in her senior class at OCHS and is in the running to be valedictorian this year. Her cross country coach and teacher Lynne Ely says, “She excels as a student, not merely for grades, but for the love of learning.”

Alyssa is also an accomplished musician who sings in her school chorus. Even as a musician, she finds ways to push herself, like taking the risk of singing “scat” style in a jazz chorus performance in December. Alyssa is also vice president of Tri-M Music Honors Society, co-president of German Club, and an officer of Beta Club, and she is very active in her church and other community organizations. She has certainly made the most of her high school years and says, “Cross country has been a highlight of my high school career.”

Alyssa will likely attend UGA next year, and is thinking about becoming a pharmacist. I believe that no matter where she ends up, Alyssa will always be an athlete (and student and musician and leader) on the MOVE.

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