MILTON — Preparations are underway in the Santa Rosa School District for the 2019 graduation ceremonies for the seven area high schools.

The Santa Rosa Press Gazette would like to take a moment to acknowledge the valedictorians of Santa Rosa County for their hard work and dedication. The paper reached out to all area high schools and asked each valedictorian a few questions to share with the community.

Meet the Jay High School valedictorian Caleb Blackman.

How does it feel to be awarded valedictorian? It feels great. This is something I have worked at for a long time and to see it pay off is very humbling. Who has been the most influential person in your time at high school? The most influential person in high school was my uncle, Ken Blackman. He was a valedictorian in 1986 and in 2015 he passed away form cancer. Everything I've done since then has been in his memory. What is one piece of advice you would give to underclassmen? Be ready for change. My life contained so many twists and turns throughout high school. The best advice I can give is to adapt to your surroundings. What is one thing you would like to change about the world? If I could change one thing it would be to introduce more college preparation courses into the school system. Many kids do not feel prepared for college and this would greatly help.
What do you plan to do after graduation? Do you have a career in mind? I plan to study business at the University of West Florida and become an actuary.
What's something funny that happened while you were in high school you wouldn't mind people forgetting? At the Jay vs. Flomaton football game, I tried to hop the fence to get onto the field. I tripped on the fence and fell on my face in front of the entire student section. Needless to say I would like everyone to forget that memory.