By Ryan Collins
This fall, Jamesville-DeWitt High School received plenty of new students. Seniors Taylor Kreung and Ahmari Armstrong are two of those students who migrated to Syracuse from southern states. Kreung came from South Carolina and Armstrong came from Georgia, but both are struggling with leaving everything behind their senior year of high school to start over in a new town.
They aren’t strangers to moving, however. In fact, Kreung has lived in four different states as well as Italy. Both Kreung and Armstrong aren’t strangers to Syracuse, either, having both lived in Syracuse before. “I was born and raised in Syracuse,” said Armstrong, who left in 2010. Kreung was born in Chicago, IL, but lived here when she was 5. Both moved because of their parents’ professions. “My stepdad is in the military and we travel everywhere,” said Kreung. Armstrong’s mother received a job opportunity here in Upstate New York.
Being seniors, it was difficult to leave behind many of the things that were important to them during the last year as a high school student. The two girls said that they both truly miss their friends. Kreung said that it was hard to adjust to school here, because “the curriculum is different.” Armstrong said that school down in Georgia was academically harder. “Here it is kind of hard, but I’m ahead here. When I got here I only had to take three to four core classes,” said Armstrong. Armstrong also misses the weather in Georgia, which was “like 90 degrees.” “I like everything here, except the snow, but I used to live in Alaska so I can deal with it,” said Kreung. Kreung compared Alaska to Syracuse and said that they were fairly similar although she said it was colder in Alaska. Armstrong also dislikes the snow because she now has to drive in it. In Georgia, it doesn't frequently snow, but when it does, there isn’t much. “(Snow) never sticks though; it will melt and then we would have black ice for a week,” Armstrong said. Armstrong said that the first Georgia snowstorm she experienced was in 2010. She remembers there was a large amount of black ice.
So far Armstrong and Kreung have liked their experience in Syracuse despite not having hit the highlights of Syracuse like Destiny and Dinosaur Barbque. Armstrong has extended family here in Syracuse and likes to spend time with them. She’s family-oriented and so she enjoys having her relatives close by. Kreung said that she likes the overall vibe of the Syracuse University campus.
“People in Georgia are more nice, but I've know people here longer so it balances it out,” said Armstrong when comparing her old and new towns. Despite the change, the two agreed that, overall, they were glad they moved because of all the new people they have meet.
Both girls are cheerleaders for JD for the football and basketball teams. They have cheered other places in the past and Kreung plays soccer. Kreung also had a positive opinion on JDHS. “There is more of a variety of ethnics here” said Kreung. They are mostly excited to spend their senior year here at JDHS and be successful in the future. Both Kreung and Armstrong plan to attend college after their short time spent at Jamesville-DeWitt High School. Kreung will stay in the area attending Onondaga Community College than transferring to Syracuse University to study sports medicine.