By Steve Svetovich
Raising two daughters as a single mom has its challenges, but Dunmore’s Janet Lucas has absolutely no regrets. And she sure did good.
Amanda Lucas, Dunmore High School Class of 2018 Valedictorian, and Rebecca Lucas, Dunmore High School Class of 2020 Salutatorian, daughters of Janet Lucas, Dunmore, and Curt Lucas, South Carolina, are now college students.
Both were officers and members of many clubs at Dunmore. Both participated in various varsity sports and cheerleading. They were asked to represent Dunmore High School in leadership roles, including the Rotary Youth Leadership Association (RYLA) and Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership (HOBY). Both are active leaders in the Dunmore community.
Their proud mom feels their accomplishments are extraordinary coming from sisters two years apart.
“As a single mom,” she said, “I have strived to make my daughters feel like they matter, and that they are loved unconditionally.
“I always wanted Amanda and Rebecca to be respectful, grateful, thoughtful and conscientious. I worked hard to instill those qualities and give them a strong foundation. From there, it was all them.
“Their work ethic and self motivation is unbelievable, even when it was difficult. I am so proud of the young women they have become, and so excited to see what they will accomplish. I am in awe of my daughters.”
Amanda is a junior at St. Joseph’s University, Philadelphia, majoring in chemistry. She has an impressive 3.97 academic average. She serves as honor’s mentor for the Honor’s Program at St. Joseph’s. She is a resident assistant (RA) for a freshmen dormitory.
While at Dunmore, Amanda participated in golf, swimming, track and field, football cheerleading, yearbook editor, events coordinator for the engineering club, treasurer of the French Club and vice president of TACT. As a senior, she was Dunmore’s first female All Regional selection for golf. And she was class valedictorian and member of the National Honor Society.
Articulate, courteous and polite, Amanda said she learned a lot from her mom. “My mom taught me about perseverance and hard work. In order to accomplish anything in life, you need to work hard at it. And she did a lot for me to help me along.”
Amanda said she would like to eventually go to graduate school for Forensic Science and get into the field as a career.
She said it is nice to see her sister do well in school. “It is a friendly competition and it’s good for us. She sees what I do and then strives to do better. It’s a good thing.”
Amanda, well spoken, has high praise for Dunmore. “It was so close knit and personal. We know all the teachers and they know us. It is also kind of cool to have your coaches as teachers.
“St. Joseph’s is also a small school. I have a small major and the same kids are in most of my classes. Right now we are wearing masks and social distancing. We social distance in the residence hall.”
Rebecca, 18, is a freshman at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia where she majors in Pharmacy. It is a six-year program and she has intentions of becoming a pharmacist.
While at Dunmore, she was class salutatorian finishing with a 3.84 academic average. She was a member of track and field, golf, basketball cheerleading captain, Science Club, French Club, TACT, Art Club, SADD and National Honor Society.
Also polite and insightful, Rebecca praised her mom. “My mom always taught me to work hard. She always tells me no matter what, it works out in the end. She is always there for me.”
Rebecca said she is grateful how Dunmore High School handled the pandemic. “Our teachers were very helpful getting us the information we needed online. They posted information on the AP test.
“Besides school work, I did a lot of running and spent time with family during the pandemic. It caused us to miss the track season.”
Finally, her class graduated this past July 17 in a small ceremony outdoors at the football stadium.
Rebecca said her goal is to become a pharmacist and help with surgeries and new medicines. “Helping with new medicines is very important to me because of this pandemic.”
As Class of 2020 Salutatorian, she feels a sense of accomplishment. “I feel very honored. I put hard work into it and it paid off.”
She is also proud of her older sister’s accomplishments. “I have a strong sense of fulfillment for what she has done, but I don’t compare myself.”
Rebecca spoke glowingly of her experiences at Dunmore. “It was very fulfilling and heart warming. I received a great education and met a lot of amazing people.”
The sisters have one more thing in common. When asked separately who they would want to see in concert, if they could pick just one, both responded Harry Styles.