“I was very honored when I found out I was selected as the winner for this region. I was recognized in front of the school board and they congratulated me. I was really proud,” said Murphy.
Murphy, 17, will complete his final year as a senior at Cleveland High School in the fall.
In May, Murphy was chosen as the TSBA student representative for Cleveland City Schools. Schools Director Dr. Rick Denning nominated Murphy to the TSBA for the regional recognition award.
Nine students have been selected across the state for the 2010 TSBA awards for their individual regions. A state representative will be selected in November.
The nine regional TBSA student representatives will be required to write an essay focusing on school system changes for the final competition.
“Basically we have to write an essay on what changes we would like to see in school systems,” said Murphy.
The CHS senior said one of the biggest changes he would like to see in school system’s is more focus on theater, music and the arts.
“I think that arts, including theater, band and media classes are very much left out. There’s a huge focus on sports, a huge focus, and that’s fine. I’m all for sports but I feel there should be a balance between the two. I would really like to see that change,” said Murphy.
Murphy attended George R. Stuart Elementary and Cleveland Middle School. Since his high school career, he has completed 12 honors courses and his current GPA is 4.0. He has been on the gold honor roll, a Tennessee Scholar since 2008 and a Raider Scholar since 2007. At CHS he has received the Modern World History award, Geometry honors award and Algebra II honors award.
In 2008, he was one of the top four finalists in the U.S. and Canada to place in the Young Naturalist Science Project Competition.
Murphy is the CHS student body president for the 2010-11 school year, student body vice president 2009-10 and Student Government Association class representative from 2007-11. He has been a member of the National Honor Society since 2008. He has been in the CHS Marching Band since 2007, playing trumpet.
Murphy has also been involved with the CHS Thespian Club, Interact Club, Voice Productions Club and performed in several musicals.
He is a lifelong member of Broad Street United Methodist Church and is actively involved with youth group, Vacation Bible School and church camp projects.
In 2008, Murphy volunteered with the Habitat for Humanity home-building organization and coordinated a school fundraiser for Cystic Fibrosis in 2009.
Murphy said his top three choices for college are the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, Samford University and the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.
“I would love to do something in film or politics. I’m involved in the model U.N. group where we debate topics and I really enjoy that,” said Murphy.