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Meet the 2024 Louisiana High School Student of the Year

History was made when Benton High School senior and valedictorian Zach Cryer achieved a perfect trifecta after being named the 2024 Louisiana High School Student of the Year by the Louisiana Department of Education. Cryer was also the Louisiana Elementary Student of the Year in 2017 and Louisiana Middle School Student of the Year in 2020. 

During his school career, Cryer has been a model student academically and athletically, and has served his community and state as a leader. He has maintained a 4.0 grade point average throughout high school, demonstrated athleticism in basketball and track and is the Louisiana 4-H State President, a platform that has enabled Cryer to speak to both state and U.S. lawmakers. His communication skills have also led to positions as a Bossier Teen Court juror, National Youth Conference leader and officer for BETA, Student Council and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. 

Despite his many accolades, Cryer has never lost sight of his guiding principle, which has been, “A life isn’t significant except for its impact on other lives.” 

After it was announced that Cryer reached the pinnacle of an incredible K-12 academic journey, congratulatory wishes came pouring in, including those from Bossier Schools Superintendent Jason Rowland. 

“Zach is easily one of the most impressive young men I have ever met,” Superintendent Rowland said. “He embodies the best of everything anyone could want or ask for in a student. Zach is smart, determined, focused, respectful, kind to his peers and he has a servant’s heart. No one is more deserving of this honor than Zach Cryer. He makes us Bossier Proud and we are excited to see where the future leads him.”

Cryer will graduate with honors from Benton High School and will be recognized at the August 21 Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) meeting in Baton Rouge. He will attend Louisiana State University in the fall, where Cryer will major in Nutrition and Food Science/Pre-Med as part of the LSU Honors College and Stamps Scholars Program. Cryer then plans to attend medical school and become a rheumatologist.