By Jason Wesseldyk
As a junior, Elijah Veen established himself as one of the top cross country runners in Division 2, finishing 18th at the state finals to earn All-State honors.
Veen brought that same passion and desire for excellence to the classroom. And as a result, he earned the distinction of being named valedictorian of the Plainwell High School Class of 2022.
Veen, the son of Kim and Dan Veen, headlines the Top 22 graduating seniors for Plainwell.
Next fall, Veen plans to attend the University of Michigan. He will major in engineering.
In addition to cross country, Veen ran track at Plainwell. He specialized in the mid-distance events, claiming the Wolverine Conference championship in the 800-meter dash as a senior.
Outside of sports, Veen participated in National Honor Society.
Here is a look at the other members of Plainwell High School’s top seniors of the Class of 2022:
Jack is the son of Melissa and Jeff Anderson. This fall, Jack will be studying law or business at Alma College.
Ryan is the son of Janet Simons and Joe Bainbridge. Ryan will be attending Western Michigan University in the fall to study engineering.
Brendan is the son of Megan Brinkman and Clay Burch. This fall, Brendan will be attending Kalamazoo Valley Community College.
Nathan is the son of Gretchen and Jason Ferris. This fall, Nathan will be studying biology and criminal justice at Grand Valley State University.
William is the son of Laura and Kyle Furge. William will be attending Muhlenberg College this fall to study finance and mathematics.
Mackenzie is the daughter of Jamie and Chip Hill. This fall, Mackenzie will study exercise science and business at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse.
McKenna is the daughter of Angie and Rick Hochstedler. This fall, McKenna will be attending Michigan State University to study supply chain management.
Alexia is the daughter of Kirsten and Benjamin Inquilla. Alexia will be attending Tulane University this fall to study Spanish and environmental studies.
Caden is the child of Ted Lowis. This fall, Caden will attend Kalamazoo College to study chemical engineering.
Finnegan is the daughter of Sarah McKenzie and Melissa Preston. Finnegan will be attending Central Michigan University to study marine biology this fall.
Trinity Newington is the daughter of Andra Curtice. This fall, Trinity will attend Michigan State University to study human biology.
Cameron is the son of Jody and Charlie Otten. Cameron will be attending Michigan State University to study computer science.
Xavier is the son of Susan Prentice-Sao and Is Sao. Xavier will be attending Skidmore College to study philosophy.
Sarah is the daughter of Melissa and Glen Russell. This fall, Sarah will be attending Kalamazoo Valley Community College to study animal science.
Serafin is the daughter of Jennifer Chudy. Serafin will study secondary education and Spanish at the University of Michigan this fall.
Katherine is the daughter of Mari Tobin. Sarah will be attending Hillsdale College to study business this fall.
Keagan is the son of Troy and Melissa Tungate. This fall, Keagan will be attending the University of Michigan to study economics.
Lauren is the daughter of Steve and Tammy Vanderstelt. Lauren will be attending Calvin University to study exercise science this fall.
Rebecca is the daughter of Brian and Joan Wagner. Rebecca will be attending Western Michigan University this fall to study music education.
Kaylee is the daughter of Jeremy and Jennifer Wright. This fall, Kaylee will be attending the United States Coast Guard Academy to study government
Kathryn is the daughter of Shannon and Mark Zabaldo. Kathryn will be attending Kalamazoo College to study biochemistry this fall.