Kayla Kim and Isiah Hill honored as STAR student and teacher
The Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce has honored Kayla Kim as Wesleyan School’s STAR student for the 2021-2022 school year. In turn, Kayla was able to select the teacher who has had the greatest influence on her academic life to be named Wesleyan’s STAR teacher, and she selected Dr. Isiah Hill.
Beyond stellar academics, Kim is a member of the math team, history bowl, science team, and is the founder and president of the debate club. Kim has been recognized as the President of the National Art Honor Society. In addition, Kim serves as a Wesleyan Ambassador for admissions tours and helps lead SALSA (Students Advocating for Life without Substance Abuse) programming for lower and middle-school students. Kim is a co-founder of TheVirusWarriors, a community-based organization that seeks to educate students about public health. She competes on a national level in archery and has won five gold medals. Finally, art is a significant passion for Kayla; she has been recognized with two gold medals for her works through the Scholastic Competition in painting. Through several internships at local hospitals and a traffic clinic, along with her service in the community teaching English and participation in food drives, Kayla exemplifies the J.O.Y. motto.
When asked why she selected Dr. Hill as her STAR teacher, Kim said, “I chose Dr. Hill because of just how much I can tell he truly cherishes his students. He takes his time to converse with students, whether that be in the classroom or simply passing by in the hallways. He always carries God’s message of J.O.Y. with him. I learned from him that I don’t need to be a pastor or a Bible teacher to teach and show God’s message. Dr. Hill always has a joke or two in his pocket to brighten up my day or anyone’s day for that matter. He’s always so willing to help students outside of the classroom, and I am so grateful for that. This year, I’m working on a chemistry research project in a different course, and I have received so much support and advice from Dr. Hill. I chose Dr. Hill as my STAR teacher because I truly appreciate everything he has done for me for the last three years.”
Dr. Isiah Hill holds a Bachelor of Science in chemistry from North Carolina Central University and a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Georgia Institute of Technology. Hill is in his 16th year of teaching and is highly involved in the lives of the students in the high school. Hill has coached middle school football and continues to serve as a varsity assistant coach for the high school track and field team. Hill is the High School Diversity Coordinator, co-sponsor for the G.R.A.C.E. Diversity Club, and has led a mission trip to Ecuador. In addition to these roles, Hill is the senior boys grade chair and was recognized last spring as a Georgia Independent School Association (GISA) Master Teacher after he completed a detailed application process. Hill has also served as a commissioner on the Educator Ethics Review Committee for the Georgia Professional Standards Commission for the past 5 years. Hill's passion for teaching, love for students, and his rich connections with faculty make him an asset to the work and growth of diversity at Wesleyan School.
The PAGE Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) program is sponsored, administered, and promoted by the Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE) and the PAGE Foundation. Since its inception in 1958, the STAR program has honored nearly 28,500 students and the teachers selected as the most influential to their academic achievement. To obtain the STAR nomination, high school seniors must have the highest score in a single sitting on the SAT, taken through the November test date of their senior year, and be in the top 10% or among the top 10 students in their class based on grade point average. Students and their teachers are honored by receiving special recognition in their communities from more than 165 statewide civic organizations and businesses and will be celebrated at a luncheon on Feb. 9, 2022.
We are honored to have Kayla Kim and Dr. Isiah Hill represent Wesleyan as our STAR student and teacher. Congratulations to each of them and their families!