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by Natalie Gibson

At The June Buchanan School, all students are encouraged to set high standards for themselves and to continually work towards the achievement of their goals. One such outstanding JBS student who has been striving to fulfill his literary ambitions is Ian T. Hall, son of Charles David and Cindy Hall of Raven, Kentucky.

Ian is the type of student who would stand out in any crowd. Initially, one notices his 6’7” frame—a characteristic which comes in handy when he is playing basketball for the Crusaders; however, after speaking with Ian, it becomes apparent that this is not your average student. Ian’s keen intellect and command of the English language is apparent to anyone who meets him. His love of language and literature has formed a strong foundation for a phenomenal school year and the potential for future success.

His literary ambitions have been nurtured at The June Buchanan School. Through the Caney Honors and Achievement Program, Ian has been able to take multiple English classes at Alice Lloyd College, including an independent study in Creative Writing with ALC’s Academic Dean, Dr. Claude Crum. Ian’s 4.0 GPA in these college-level English classes is extremely impressive; however, his drive to become a published author is beyond compare. He has had short stories published in a variety of magazines, including Modern Mountain Magazine and Word Hotel, the literary journal for Spalding University’s BFA in Creative Writing program. In addition to short fiction, Ian is also a prolific poet. His poem titled “Beat” won 2nd place in the Billie and Curtis Owens Literary Society Creative Writing Competition (sponsored by Alice Lloyd College), making Ian the first high school student to win this type of award at ALC.

Ian plans to continue his pursuit of literary success. As a finalist for the Governor’s School for the Arts in Creative Writing, he hopes to spend his summer immersed in writing and surrounded by individuals who can help him grow as an artist.

He is an active member of the JBS High School Academic Team, and won 1st place in Language Arts at both the District and Regional levels this year, thus qualifying him for State Competition. His interests also include the sciences, and he has participated in a variety of selective medical programs, including a medical camp sponsored by the University of Kentucky. Ian’s drive to succeed and commitment to his goals make him one of Appalachia’s “brightest and best” students, and his multiple talents ensure that he will go far in life, no matter what career path he chooses to pursue.