Kylie Pond, a 2013 graduate of Grand Junction High School and 2019 graduate of North Carolina State University, graduated recently from Columbia University in New York City, New York, with a masters in real estate development.

Pond was a recipient of the New York Women Executives in Real Estate Scholarship and received an honor award for excellence in real estate development.

Nicole Mackey of Fruita received a master of science in dietetics from the University of Rhode Island in Kingston, Rhode Island.

Derek M. Shaver of Grand Junction was named to the spring 2021 dean’s honor roll at Wichita State University in Wichita, Kansas.

Sharla Waggoner of Grand Junction was named to first honors dean’s list during the spring 2021 semester at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts.

Royanna Crawford was awarded a $4,000 scholarship from the Friends of Ridgway State Park. The annual award is for colleges students who graduated high school from Mesa, Delta, Montrose or Ouray counties who are studying biology, wildlife management or a related degree. A Grand Junction High School graduate and a current Colorado Mesa University senior, Crawford worked with CMU professor Denita Weeks this summer studying the effects of chytrid fungus on boreal toads on the Grand Mesa.

Grace McCrum of Grand Junction received the Elmira College Key Award of academic and community leadership from Elmira College in Elmira, New York. The award is presented to outstanding students in their junior year of high school or preparatory school.

Openings at D-51 preschools

Openings are available in several District 51 preschool programs for the 2021–22 school year.

Applications can be picked up and dropped off at the Hawthorne Building, 410 Hill Ave. Applications are accepted year-round and acceptance is based on availability and eligibility.

Parents and guardians can apply for preschool if their child will be 3 or 4-years-old on or before Aug. 31, 2021. In compliance with the Colorado Preschool Program, applicants must have significant risk factors as defined by the state in order to be eligible for D51 preschool programming. Three-year-olds must have at least three significant risk factors and 4-year-olds must have at least one significant risk factor in order to apply. Risk factors can be found at

District 51 preschool programs are free and offered for three hours each day, Monday through Thursday. Morning and afternoon sessions are available.

All but three of District 51’s 25 elementary schools have preschool programming. The exceptions are Chipeta, Pomona, and Scenic. Preschool classrooms are currently full at Appleton, Loma, Mesa View, Monument Ridge, Nisley, Pear Park, Rim Rock, Rocky Mountain, and Shelledy, however spots could open up again if a student drops from the program, and parents can mark a first and second choice on their application.

Preschool applications are also being accepted for district-affiliated sites Crossroads Academy in Grand Junction and Little Blossoms in Palisade.

Call 254-5429 for information.

Submit Student Spotlight items by email to, by fax at 244-8578, or by mail to 734 S. Seventh St., Grand Junction, CO, 81501.