Meet the Veritas Prep Valedictorian and Co-Salutatorians

Veritas Prep May 23, 2024

Veritas ValedictorianVeritas Preparatory Academy is proud to announce Kishan Bhatnagar as its valedictorian for the graduating class of 2024. Bhatnagar has consistently impressed with his academic achievements, extracurricular involvement, and leadership qualities.

In the fall, Bhatnagar will be continuing his academic journey at Barrett, The Honors College at Arizona State University.

His leadership extends far beyond the classroom. The summer before junior year, he took the initiative to develop his teaching skills while working as a math tutor at Mathnasium. He is also the founder of the Veritas Peer Tutoring Organization, demonstrating his commitment to helping his peers succeed.

Bhatnagar’s commitment to service shines through his work with Chinmaya Mission Yuva Kendra (CHYK), the youth division of his Hindu Sunday School program. Through his efforts, Bhatnagar successfully reorganized the CHYK program structure to facilitate and support youth leadership. Several projects are now underway for this year, a direct result of his vision and initiative.

As captain of the Veritas cross-country team, he understood the importance of preparation. In the absence of the coach, Bhatnagar took it upon himself to organize summer practices, plan routes, and motivate his teammates. His dedication to excellence was further recognized by his selection to the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee for Great Hearts Academies. Through this role, he serves as a voice for student athletes, providing valuable feedback to improve the athletic department.

Bhatnagar ‘s academic achievements are equally impressive. Beyond his role as Valedictorian, his dedication to Veritas‘ core principles was recognized by the awarding of the prestigious Ethos Award in his junior year. This award signifies the embodiment of Veritas‘ principles and virtues. He is also a member of the Veritas Elite Chorale, the school’s most prestigious musical group. His participation in the Men’s Choir, Arizona Boys State, and the Arizona High School Leadership Academy further highlights his well-rounded interests and thirst for knowledge.

Veritas Prep Co-Salutatorians

Veritas Prep is also thrilled to announce Georgia Holmes, Christian Graeff, and Aidan Robinson as Co-Salutatorians for the graduating class of 2024.

Holmes will be attending the University of San Diego. This past year, she served as a House Consul. This highly competitive position tasked her with guiding and motivating approximately 100 younger students throughout the year. Her leadership responsibilities also included representing her peers at school information nights and serving as a liaison for visiting college representatives.

Recognizing a need, Holmes, along with two other students, spearheaded the revitalization of Veritas’ community service organization, Veritas Great Hearts Great Hands. Their dedication paid off, growing the program to 50 active members. Her commitment extends beyond Veritas, as she has volunteered at St. Vincent de Paul, stocking pantries, sorting donations, and tutoring young students.

Her dedication to Mock Trial exemplifies her ability to excel in both academics and extracurricular activities. She has earned numerous accolades, including outstanding attorney and witness awards at the prestigious Yale Mock Trial Invitational, where her team secured a remarkable second-place finish. Her record also boasts a second-place finish at the Arizona State Mock Trial competition and a first-place win at the Arizona Regional Mock Trial competition.

Holmes’ artistic talents shine through her membership in the Veritas Honor Chorale. This prestigious musical group requires a rigorous audition process, and she secured one of only 40 coveted spots. In recognition of her artistic talents, she received three awards at the 2023 New Horizons High School Student Art Exhibition.

Robinson will be attending Duke University next fall where he will study Aerospace Engineering. As a top student at Veritas, he has given of his time and talents to the Veritas Mentor program, Great Hearts Great Hands service club, Men’s Choir, Engineering Club and our Varsity Golf team.

Outside of school, Robinson was treasurer of his Boys Team Charity class and assists newer golfers in the Phoenician Junior Golf program.  During junior year, Robinson signed up for flight lessons explaining, “it is one thing to talk about the four forces acting on an object in flight (lift, weight, thrust, and drag) but knowing how those actually feel and change as you interact with airplane controls is another.” The FAA estimates that there are approximately 500 17-year-olds in the US currently holding a private pilot’s license and Robinson has dedicated innumerable hours to reach this goal. He has taken every opportunity to grow during his years at Veritas in his love of math, science, and business to forge his future in the aerospace industry.

Graeff will be attending ASU Barrett the Honors College where he will study Electrical Engineering and Physics. He received the competitive ASU Next Generation Service Corps Scholarship covering full tuition and providing him with a 4-year leadership program focused on solving issues facing our society. He will center his project on sustainability.

Graeff was Consul of House Charlemagne. As such he led about 135 students, grade 6-12, in academic and athletic field days, volunteer drives, quarterly Coffee Houses, and spirit days throughout the year.  Additionally, Graeff met weekly with school administration, functioned as a student ambassador, and assisted with schoolwide presentations to the larger community.  He has also had substantial roles in the majority of Veritas plays and musicals over the years and was a member of the Men’s Choir and the elite VPA Chorale, who won state rankings of Superior (2023) and Excellent (2022).

Graeff  was selected to represent Veritas at Arizona Boys State, where he was elected as a Senator. A bit of a history buff, he also designed and implemented a fund-raising project for repairs at the Rosson House Museum in downtown Phoenix where he exceeded the fundraising goal.

Please join us in congratulating these great-hearted seniors and their incredible accomplishments!

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