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Senior Spotlight: Jahner’s hard work pays off

Trinity High School senior Rachel Jahner and her fellow classmates will receive their diplomas Sunday in the THS auditorium — the first time they will return to school since the March 2 fire closed the doors.

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“It’s really nice to be able to graduate on stage — it’s a big tradition and nice to come back there,” she said.

She considers the fire a learning experience.

“I feel the fire allowed us to become closer as a family,” Jahner said. “Throughout the community, the businesses and schools have given us outstanding support.”

As a commencement speaker and class valedictorian, Jahner plans to give a positive message to her classmates, drawing on her successes with the golf team. She was the Class A state champion last fall competing for Dickinson High School.

“I’m proud of my golfing career this year,” she said. “It has paid off with hard work and dedication.

Jahner is the daughter of Jim and Kari Jahner and has attended the Dickinson Catholic Schools since kindergarten.

“Going to Trinity has really been a blessing,” she said. “You can worship and honor God with your classmates. I have friends in every class, and it’s nice to come together and honor God that way.”

Jahner has won multiple golfing honors at all levels of competition. She was an all-region basketball player for the Titans — she made 10 3-pointers in a Region 7 semifinal game as a junior — and is a standout softball player for Dickinson High, amongst her many honors in each sport. In 2013, she was named Trinity’s female athlete of the year.

“Summers, I usually golf every day with my brother,” she said, referring to sophomore Willy Jahner, the Class B Region 5 boys golf champion as a sophomore.

“Actually, I hated golf when I was younger. I’d sit on the cart and read a book. Then I took lessons and it all started from there.”

When not participating in sports, Jahner worked on the THS yearbook, participated in band and Acalympics, and is a member of the National Honor Society.

Jahner said her parents and brother are her biggest supporters.

“They encouraged me in everything,” she said. “I was never forced into anything. They let me figure out what I was to do with my life.

“All my teachers and staff helped me figure out what was most important in life — keeping faith in everything even through the hard times.”

Dean of Students Rev. Kregg Hochhalter said Jahner characterizes Trinity High School.

“She lives her faith actively; and secondly, she’s involved on the basketball court and heavily involved in classroom and several organizations,” Hochhalter said. “She’s athletic, she’s a thinker and she’s a volunteer. She is incredibly well-rounded.”

Jahner plans to study nursing at the University of Jamestown, where she will play golf. She eventually wants to become a nurse anesthetist.

While she is excited about the next chapter in her life, Jahner realizes what she’ll miss.

“Looking back, I’m going to miss all my classmates I see every day,” she said. “We are such a close class and hopefully we’ll be seeing each other in the years to come.”