Due to the pandemic, the AKA AKAdemy Class of 2020 were not able to have their end of the year celebration, but the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Zeta Upsilon Omega Chapter and the men of Eta Rho Chapter of Omega Psi made sure each graduating student received a proper send-off.
ST. PETERSBURG – The AKA AKAdemy Class of 2020 began the year with a brunch themed “Vision 20-20” and shared plans for a year of celebrations, parties, and graduation bashes and quickly without much notice had to shift, pivot and demonstrate resilience and determination to finish strong.
In-person senior year activities were put on hold, and celebrations became at-home or drive-by, Zoom parties and yard signs.
The AKA AKAdemy has always emphasized celebrating our graduating seniors – and while different, we celebrate the culmination of years of learning and accomplishments of the AKA AKAdemy Class of 2020 scholars.
“This year, we recognize 29 graduates of the AKA AKAdemy Class of 2020, some who have started to make their mark and others who are charting the course for their journey. We recognize their family and mentors – those that stood strong and kept them grounded and encouraged as we all navigated a ‘new normal,’” stated Manitia Moultrie, AKA AKAdemy program director.
The Youth Development Foundation of Pinellas County, Inc. in partnership with Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Zeta Upsilon Omega Chapter and the men of Eta Rho Chapter of Omega Psi celebrate and congratulate the AKA AKAdemy Class of 2020 graduates:
Jarwon Adderley, the son of Ms. Jeannette Peterson and a graduate of St. Petersburg Collegiate High School. His honors and recognitions include the National Honor Society, Pinellas County Urban League Award and Black Leadership Network Scholarship. Jarwon plans to attend the University of South Florida and major in economics/pre-law.
We look forward to seeing what’s next for Jarwon!
Shakenya Baker, the daughter of Ms. Shermeka Grant. Shakenya is a graduate of Gibbs High School. She has participated in the SADD Club, Yearbook Club, Big-Brother Big-Sister and BETA. She is planning to attend Bethune Cookman University and major in criminal justice.
Best wishes, Sakenya!
De’Ayzia Bradford, the daughter of Ms.Takeesha Hall. She is a graduate of Boca Ciega High School where she was inducted into the National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society and Rho Kappa. De’Ayzia plans to further her studies at Florida Atlantic University and major in biological sciences. Best wishes to De’Ayzia.
Brent Brown II, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Brent (and Jounice) Brown. Brent is a graduate of Boca Ciega High School. He has been a diligent member of the JROTC, the National Honor Society, Rho Kappa, the Science National Honor Society, Track and Field and the youth ministry at Bethel Community Baptist Church.
Brent is off to West Point Military Academy Preparatory School and plans to pursue a military career as a pilot in the U.S. Marine Corps. We are so proud and look forward to sharing his exciting journey.
Jataruis Bunch, the son of Mrs. Jennifer Edwards. Jataruis is a graduate of Gibbs High School, where he participated in the JROTC Program. He attends the St. Petersburg College Year Up program and was a member of the Big Brothers-Big Sisters program.
He has received several awards, including the JROTC Instructors Award, AKAdemic Excellence Award and Anne Frank Humanitarian Award.
Jataruis plans to attend SPC for two years and then pursue a military career in the Air Force. He has been a member of the Pathfinder program since the seventh grade. Jataruis’ message to the AKAdemy: “the AKAdemy program has built upon the skills and traits we possess today…thank you for all you have given, shown and brought out of us.”
Ashanti Days, the daughter of Ms. Rekeytah Hassan. She is a graduate of Lennard High School, where she participated in student government, the Kiwanis Club and dedicated her free time to volunteering for community development projects. She plans to spend her summer volunteering at All Children’s Hospital before she heads off to Clark Atlanta University in the fall to pursue a degree in mass media. Congratulations Ashanti!
Tycieannia Conage, the daughter of Ms. Ashlei Conage. Tycieannia is a graduate of Gibbs High School. She participated in the St. Petersburg Police Explorers Program and received the African-American Academic Excellence Award from St. Petersburg College. Tycieannia plans to attend Fort Valley State University, majoring in criminal justice to pursue a forensic criminologist’s career. Help us congratulate Tycieannia!
Sorayah Douglass, the daughter of Mr. Trevor Douglass and Ms. Sashanna Roman. Sorayah is a graduate of the Center of Advanced Technologies at Lakewood High School, where she competed for the softball championship. Her activities and special recognitions include the National Honor Society, Take Stock in Children Scholarship and NCNW Scholarships.
Sorayah plans to attend the University of South Florida to pursue a degree in biomedical engineering. Well wishes and many blessings Sorayah!!
Mikayla Fudge, the daughter of Mr. Destry Fudge, Sr. and Dr. Marilyn Fudge. Mikayla is a graduate of Admiral Farragut Academy and has been a member of the AKAdemy since 2013. Her honors and activities include the National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, student government, debate team, volleyball and soccer.
In addition, she has received scholarships, including the BCU Excelsior I Scholarship, recipient of the Eta Rho Educational Services Scholarship and the Jack & Jill Scholarship. Mikayla plans to attend Bethune-Cookman University and pursue a degree in psychology. Congratulations to our Exquisite Gem Mikayla.
Tamyra Hadley, the daughter of Mr. Michael and Mrs. Tia Hadley. Tamyra has been a member of the AKAdemy since 2012. She is a graduate of The Boca Ciega High School and plans to attend St. Petersburg College majoring in biology. Her career goal is to become a pharmacist.
Tamyra’s message: “Always strive for the best and remember your attitude determines your altitude.” Please help us congratulate Tamyra!
Jade Harmon, the daughter of Mr. Charles Harmon & Ms. Laurie Means. Jade is a graduate of Dixie Hollins High School where her honors and activities include the National Honor Society, American Sign Language Honor Society, Student Council and AVID Ambassadors. Upon graduation, she plans to major in political science/pre-law at Florida International University. She is proud of her accomplishments and advises students to “always remember to share positivity.” Congratulations Jade!
Cedria Jackson, (not pictured), the daughter of Kionia Long. Cedria is a graduate of The Boca Ciega High School. She participated in the College Reach-Out Program, National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Science Honor Society, Rho Kappa and AVID.
Cedria plans to attend Florida A & M University and become an orthodontist and entrepreneur. Congratulations Cedria!
Kaylee Lynch, daughter of Mr. Orlando Lynch and Dr. Aderiane Hames-Lynch. Kaylee is a graduate of Gibbs High School, where her activities and honors include The National Academy of Future Physicians and Medical Scientists Award of Excellence, Ralph W. Young Family Foundation Scholarship, National Honor Society and the National Council of Negro Women Black Pearls. Kaylee plans to attend St. Petersburg College to pursue a major and career in nursing. Hats off to Kaylee!
Jordan Marion, the son of Michael and Tina Marion. He is a graduate of Osceola Fundamental High School and St. Petersburg College with an associate of arts degree. He received several scholastic awards and honors throughout his high school career while participating in the Interact Club and Mu Alpha Theta.
Jordan plans to attend the University of Central Florida and major in public relations and minor in journalism. We are excited to follow Jordan’s journey to see what’s next.
Demetrio Martin Jr., son of Mr. Demetrio Martin Sr. and Ms. Sheletha Johnson. He is a graduate of Lakewood High School. His activities and honors include the National Honor Society, sports editor of the year for the Spartan Newspaper and a member of Mt. Zion Progressive Mime Ministry. He also served as a teen mentor.
Demetrio plans to attend the University of South Florida and major in finance. We look forward to hearing great things from Demetrio.
Myya’nna McDaniel, daughter of Mr. David McDaniel and Ms. Simone Boykins. Myya’nna is a graduate of Gibbs High School and a member of the National Honor Society and Girlfriends. She plans to attend St. Petersburg College and transfer to Florida A&M University and major in biomedical engineering with plans to become the next cosmetic dermatologist. Myya’nna, we wish you all the best!
Karin McMillon, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Grant (and Kimberly) McMillon. Kimberly is a graduate of St. Petersburg Collegiate High School and St. Petersburg College (with an associate’s degree). She has been involved in the National Honor Society, Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta Honor Society, Jack and Jill of America Inc., Interact Club and Health and Wellness Club. She has received several recognitions including, Osceola Fundamental Academic Achievement Awards, the President’s Outstanding Academic Excellence Award, National Honor Society Bronze Award, Omega Psi Phi Essay Scholarship and the DOS Crescent Foundation Scholarship.
She plans to attend Florida A&M University and pursue a degree/career in pharmacy. She sends a note of thanks and appreciation to the AKAs and Omegas for their time and influence over the years. Congratulations and well wishes, Karin!
Denetria Pettis (not pictured), daughter of Mr. Antony Pettis and Ms. Daphne Clark. Denetria is a graduate of Gibbs High School and has been a repeat Honor Roll student throughout her high school educational career. She has gained valuable lessons through her participation in the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program. Denetria plans to attend St. Petersburg College for two years and transfer to Florida A&M University to pursue a degree psychology. Congratulations Denetria!
Kyle Poole (not pictured), son of Kyle Poole and Amanda Poole. Kyle is a graduate of Gibbs High School. He received several awards for placing at the district and state levels for 3D Animation competition through the Future Business Leaders of America. Kyle plans to continue his education and pursue a career in film. He is proud of his accomplishments and advises students to “stay on your toes and don’t lose sight of what’s in front of you.”
Logan Porter, daughter of Dexter and Keya Sutherland. She has been an Exquisite Gem since sixth grade. Logan is a graduate of Boca Ciega High School with plans to attend Valdosta State University and major in criminal justice. Her ultimate career goal is to become an FBI agent. Congratulations Logan!
Destiny Register, daughter of Deaunte Register and Tenisha Mitchell. Destiny is a graduate of The Boca Ciega High School and has received several honors and recognitions, including Dr. Mac J. Williams Sr. Award, AP Capstone Scholar and AVID Pinning recipient. Destiny plans to attend Hampton University and major in criminal justice. Congratulations Destiny!
Andre Rentz, Jr., son of Mr. and Mrs. Andre’ (and Yolanda) Rentz. Andre is a graduate of Palmetto High School. He played varsity football and volunteered at Solve Home and received the Cambridge AICE Diploma. Andre’ acknowledged that “the AKAdemy provided great opportunities for development and growth.”
Jarves Scruggs, the son of Mrs. Ayisha Underdue and Mr. Wayne Nelson. Jarves is a proud graduate of Pinellas Park High School. He has been a member of the Pathfinder program since 2014 and participated in 5000 Role Models and Take Stock in Children. Jarves plans to pursue a degree in biology at Virginia State University on a football scholarship. Continue to make us proud Jarves!!!
Karlena Sharp, daughter of Ms. Brenda Livingston. She is a graduate of Gibbs High School, where she participated in several organizations, including student government, J-ROTC, the National Technical Honor Society, BETA and AVID. Karlena has received several honors and recognitions through her affiliation with J-ROTC.
Her career goal is to obtain a psychology or philanthropy degree to aide her in pursuing her ultimate passion of making an impactful difference in impoverished communities. Karlena says, “What’s meant for you won’t pass you by.” Congratulations Karlena!
Aubriana Shavers, daughter of Ms. Lakisha Shavers. Aubriana is a graduate of the Wellness and Medical Professions Program at The Boca Ciega High School, where she maintained Honor Roll. Aubriana volunteered more than 300 volunteer hours at Northside Hospital and Empath Health.
She is a member of the National Spanish Honor Society, National Art Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, the Multicultural Club and AVID. She plans to attend Florida International University and major in biochemistry with aspirations of becoming an anesthesiologist.
She sends a thank you message to the AKAdemy for providing a “greater insight of different colleges, occupations and the early steps to prepare for senior year.” We wish you the best Aubriana!
Jasmine Nicole Shedrick, daughter of Dr. Jason and Sheri Shedrick. She is a graduate of The Boca Ciega High School, where she played volleyball. Jasmine received several awards and scholarships, including the Rho Kappa Honor Society, National Honor Society, Students Working Against Tobacco Club, and the Inaugural AKAdemy Great Debate.
She received the following awards: the 2010 Essence of Ebony Pearls 2nd Attendant, Dr. Mac J. Williams Award of Excellence, Vyrle Davis Academic Award, and the recipient of the University of Central Florida LEAD Scholarship.
Jasmine plans to attend UCF and major in business management. We look forward to hearing great things from you Jasmine!
Carleigh Smith, daughter of Jeff and Tracy Smith. Carleigh is a graduate of St. Petersburg High School, where she balanced academic and sports activities and maintained her role as varsity volleyball and flag football captain. Her honors and activities include the National Honor Society, Spectrum Club and the Essence of Ebony Pearls Debutante Cotillion.
Carleigh plans to major in business (marketing) and minor in commercial music at Florida Atlantic University and pursue a career as a business executive in the music industry. Congratulations Carleigh!
Kenya Welch, the daughter of Commissioner Kenneth and Donna Welch. Kenya is a graduate of St. Petersburg Collegiate High School and a member of the National Honor Society. Kenya will continue the family tradition and attend Florida A&M University in the fall to pursue a degree in business administration. We wish you the best Kenya!
Shaniya Weldon, the daughter of Terry Copeland and a graduate of Northside Christian High School. She has maintained Honor Roll throughout her high school matriculation while actively participating in the Spanish Heritage Club, Environmental Club, Justice Club and the Essence of Ebony Pearls Debutante Cotillion.
Shaniya plans to attend Saint Leo University and major in psychology-clinical / counseling. Congratulations to Shaniya, and wish her well!
DonQuan Ware Jr., son of DonQuan Ware Sr. and Dr. Cameshia Ware. DonQuan is a graduate of The Boca Ciega High School, where he was an athlete/scholar and was crowned 2020 Homecoming King . DonQuan has received several awards and honors, including the MLK Award, AVID Award and the Mac J. Williams Academic Award. He plans to attend Florida A&M University and pursue a degree in criminal justice. We wish you the best, DonQuan!
AKAdemic Excellence Awards
We are also proud of our senior scholars that should be recognized for their AKAdemic Excellence – maintaining all Dean’s List or Honor Roll for one or more semester during the school year:
Exquisite Gems – De’Ayzia Bradford, Mikayla Fudge, Tamyra Hadley, Jade Harmon, Cedria Jackson, Kaylee Lynch, Karin McMillon, Logan Porter, Aubriana Shavers, Jasmine Shedrick, Carleigh Smith, Kayla Stafford and Shaniya Weldon
Pathfinders – Jarwon Adderly, Brent Brown, ll, Jataruis Bunch and Demetrio Martin
About the Youth Development Foundation
AKA AKAdemy receives more than $109,000 annually from the Pinellas County Juvenile Welfare Board. The program is administered by the ladies of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Zeta Upsilon Omega Chapter in collaboration with the men of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., Eta Rho Chapter.
For more information regarding the AKA AKAdemy please visit the website at www.zuochapter.org/aka-akademy