FRA Inducts First Members into its Cum Laude Society

Posted: May 10, 2017

Franklin Road Academy Inducts First Members into its Cum Laude Society

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (May 10, 2016) — On Wednesday, Franklin Road Academy seniors Riley Casey, Angela Hua, Alison McKinney, Kari Meko, Emma Murray, Wes Thompson, Ponder Thurmond, and Katie Wall were inducted as the first members of the school’s Cum Laude Society Chapter.


Founded in 1906, the Cum Laude Society is dedicated to honoring scholastic achievement in secondary schools. It now has more than 380 chapters located in the United States, Canada, England, France, Spain, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines. The Cum Laude Society requires all candidate schools to undergo a rigorous review process, including submission of academic records, college data, test scores, and a campus visit by Cum Laude Regents, who are leaders of some of the finest schools in the country. Once awarded a chapter, a school is only permitted to induct the top few students, welcoming them into a society that only exists at schools that confirm superior scholastic achievement.

“All great schools include a host of programs, but at our core, we are an educational institution. In a world that is constantly pushing students to add activities, increase exposure to new things, and get noticed for their abilities to multitask, these eight students have pursued depth of knowledge and mastery in their studies. They have done it across disciplines, and they’ve done it year after year,” said Prentice Stabler, FRA’s head of upper school.

The inducted students will now join FRA’s charter members, who are all members of Cum Laude or Phi Beta Kappa, as well as a network of scholars worldwide who recognize this distinction as a mark of true academic achievement.

“Our hope is that the work ethic and pursuit of excellence that brought these students to this point will be one of the great gifts they take into whatever they do,” Stabler said.

Here are the academic achievements of the 2017 inductees:

Riley Casey
In her three years at FRA, Riley has taken five honors courses and eight AP courses, and she has been on the Head’s or Dean’s list every quarter. A member of the Science Olympiad team, she was awarded the Best Lab Performance at the Chemistry Olympiad. Riley will be attending Columbia University in the fall.

Angela Hua
Angela has been an FRA student for two years and has taken four AP classes during that time. A member of the Science Olympiad, she will be attending Vanderbilt University this fall.

Alison McKinney
Alison is a member of FRA’s 12-year club, and during her high school career, she has completed 17 honors and AP courses. She serves as president of the National Honor Society and has won the Girls Basketball Academic award for the past four years. Alison will be attending University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Kari Meko
Kari is a member of FRA’s 12-year club and is a member of the National Honor Society. During her high school tenure, she has taken six honors courses and four AP classes and has made the Head’s list all four years. Kari will continue her education at Mount Holyoke College.

Emma Murray
Emma has taken six honors classes and six AP courses during her time in high school. She will be attending Miami University of Ohio in the fall.

Wes Thompson
Wes, a member of FRA’s 12-year club, is an AP Scholar with Distinction and a Science Olympiad medalist. He has taken five honors courses and nine AP classes while in high school. Wes will attend Emory University this fall.

Ponder Thurmond
Ponder’s academic workload in high school includes 17 honors and AP courses. He is a member of the National Honor Society and has been recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. He has enrolled at Georgia Institute of Technology.

Katie Wall
Katie, a National Merit Scholar and a perennial Summa Cum Laude winner on the National Latin Exam, has amassed 17 honors and AP courses while in high school. This fall, she will attend the University of Richmond.

Last Updated: May 18, 2017