Return to Headlines

January: John Batey, Jr. of Hillside High School

Student body president, president of Kappa Leadership Development League, chorus, Glee Club, Future Business Leaders of America, student ambassador, Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council, worship team at Victorious Praise Fellowship Church: based on this list of activities, Hillside High School senior John Batey, Jr. obviously likes to be involved and give back to his school and community. That’s just one of many reasons he was selected The Herald-Sun/Durham Public Schools Student of the Month.

“He is the type of student who will give you his lunch if you seem hungry, take the jacket off his back if you appear cold and provide support if your emotional/social status has been compromised,” Hillside High’s Senior Coordinator Austin Hogan wrote about Batey. “Students and staff alike respond well to Mr. Batey as he is infectious with his positive spirit and determined attitude.”

That determined attitude helped Batey earn a 4.2 weighted GPA and acceptance to Morehouse College, the only all-male historically black institution of higher learning in the United States. He plans to study biology and eventually go to medical school.

Last summer, Batey earned an internship at Duke’s Pratt School of Engineering and worked with a doctoral student in biomedical engineering.  Through this internship Batey also had to do his own research project, present it to the class and compete against fellow interns. His presentation on heart function earned him a first place finish and a laptop.

He credits the mentorship of school counselor Hogan and Principal William Logan for helping him to maximize his potential at Hillside.

“Those two have had a real impact on my life,” said Batey, explaining that they have been like big brothers and second fathers to him.

Batey is very humble about his achievements, but says his desire to be successful drives him to do his best.