Harris-Lake Park All-Academic Students Announced

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The All-Academic Team is a feature in the Dickinson County News to showcase those students who have worked hard in the classroom over the past four years.

To begin the selection process, the DCN works with each area high school, and the principal or guidance counselor nominates two students based on academic performance and grade point average. In the event that more than two students have the same GPA, the nomination is based on balanced academic success, involvement in extracurricular activities, such as athletics, fine arts and academic groups.

In addition to their academic achievements, each of the eight students profiled have been role models for their school and communities. Many have volunteered their time to help with a variety of causes during any free hours they may have.

Each of the students on the All-Academic Team will attend a college or university next fall to pursue degrees – and all will likely make positive contributions in their chosen fields and to their communities in the future.

Congratulations to all of our outstanding honorees for 2017.


Zachary Garms

Harris-Lake Park

GPA: 3.946

Parents: Mark and Jody

Brothers and sisters: Megan, who was an inaugural member of the DCN All-Academic Team in 2014.

Future Plans: “I plan to go to college, but then I am still unsure as of right now. I plan to work as I am in college. I am interested in computer programming.”

Quotable: “It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves.” – Edmund Hillary

Zachary focused on band during his four years at Harris-Lake Park. He also helped with the sound and lights with various other school activities. His 3.946 grade point average secured a spot on H-LP’s academic honor roll.

“A lot of my spare time was spent working,” he said. “The rest was spent with my friends. I also spent a lot of time building and maintaining various computers and servers.”

Zachary says he is inspired by “this guy named Gary who I always see around.”

“He made some great decisions in his earlier life and now he is the happiest guy I see,” the senior said.

His advice to underclassmen is to strive for excellence and be self-sufficient.


James Harmon

Harris-Lake Park High School

GPA: 3.96

Parents: Tim and Heather Harmon

Brothers and sisters: Shawn (23), Luke (20), Hannah (14)

Future Plans: “I plan to attend Iowa State in the fall for food science. I want to be a field researcher in food science to find new hybrids and foods and help fight world hunger.”

Quotable: “If you ain't first, you're last.” — Ricky Bobby

James is a member of the quiz bowl team and speech team. He has been in FFA, band and student council as well.

“I played baseball and golf as well in previous years,” James said. “I also was in a few plays both at the high school and at Iowa Lakes Community College.”

The Harris-Lake Park senior has been on the “A” honor roll every semester. He was third in the State American Legion Oratorical Contest his sophomore and junior years. Harmon was a Borlaug Scholar and represented Iowa in the World Food Prize Youth Conference during his junior year.

“Norman Borlaug, a field researcher, is a great inspiration because he changed the world and makes me want to follow in his footsteps by finding hybrids and techniques to help people better use and grow food,” he said.

James lettered in academics, band, baseball, speech and choir. He’s also the Governor's Scholar for Harris-Lake Park, as well as a member of the KCAU “Best of the Class 2017” for Harris-Lake Park.

James was in 4-H Silver Shooters his junior year. He’s involved in his church youth and mission groups. He works in the kitchen at Hawkeye Care Center in Spirit Lake.

His advice to underclassmen is: “Stick up for yourself and be confident in what you do.”


The Honorees

2014 Megan Garms and Sarah Kruger

2015 Mikaela Heikens and Skylar Cudmore

2016 Jacie Rueter and Grace Heikens

2017 Zachary Garms and James Harmon

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: