Albany High's top two students battle it out for valedictorian title

Jacquie Slater
Updated: December 23, 2019 03:44 PM
Created: June 27, 2019 04:05 PM

Benjamin Franklin once said, "Life is a kind of chess, in which we have often points to gain, and competitors or adversaries to contend with."

For Jason Eveleth and Adam Aleksik, a series of strategic moves have put them in a critical position moving up to graduation day. The two young men are ranked as the top two students in Albany High's Class of 2019.


"I'm very grateful for these four years and all the help I've had along the way, a myriad of teachers and mentors," said Adam.

"I'm very excited. I mean, it’s been great here and I don't know I'm just very excited to go to college," said Jason.

While chatting with the young men, it's easy to see they are two brilliant minds with very different game plans. Jason says he has always worked hard to get the As, studying for long hours and making lots of lists to keep himself organized.

Adam says he isn’t quite as organized with his time.

"I'm an alpha procrastinator, so no, not very disciplined, end up doing homework at 2 a.m. and it was not very good for me. I somehow scraped through," said Adam.

Scraped through he did. Adam is off to Harvard in the fall. The son of parents who emigrated from Serbia, he's the American dream all the way.

"I'm planning to do a concentration in linguistics but I think the end goal is law, maybe politics," said Adam.

Adam has filled his high school days by playing varsity tennis, editing the school’s newspaper, captaining the trivia team and serving as president for the chess club. 

Jason's extracurricular activities include track, the National Honors Society, Key Club and MasterMinds. He's also in the National Honor Society, Key Club, and MasterMinds. In the fall he’s off to Brown University in Rhode Island.

While only one of them can ultimately win the game when it comes to their enthusiasm for education it's a draw.

"It's a lot of fun to learn," said Jason.

"You need to find a passion and just run with it," said Adam.

UPDATE: Jason Eveleth got top honors. See the full story here.

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