Rockford Public High School

RHS Women’s Chorus finds their voice, challenges others to do the same

January 12, 2012 // 0 Comments

We are the music makers, the dreamers of dreams by CLIFF AND NANCY HILL along with JED SCOTT  The honors never cease for Rockford High School (RHS); you could hear the pride in her voice when Mandy Makita Scott told us, “The RHS Women’s Chorus has been selected to perform at the 7th annual Michigan Music Conference (MMC).” Rockford resident Mandy Scott is the director of the Women’s Chorus at RHS. Scott is in her fourth year of teaching at RHS, where she directs two sections of the Freshman Choir and the 68-voice sophomore Women’s Chorus. Scott holds a Bachelor of Music Education from WMU and a Masters Degree in Choral Conducting from the University of Miami (FL). She currently serves on the Full Board of the Michigan School Vocal Music Association (MSVMA) as the Supervisor of High School Music Selection. The Women’s Chorus is a non-auditioned intermediate choir made up almost entirely of sophomore women. The ensemble is noted for its diverse repertoire and cohesiveness as an ensemble. The choral group has consistently earned Superior and Excellent ratings at district and state choral festivals. Held annually, the MMC draws 2,000+ attendees to their 3-day conferences – not including exhibitors, speakers, performers, parents, along with staff and volunteers. This year the conference will be held Thursday, January 19 – Saturday, January 21 at DeVos Place and Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Chosen by a juried panel of vocal music educators, representing the MSVMA, the RHS Women’s Chorus is one of six choral groups (five high schools and one middle school) to be honored to perform at this year’s Conference. Honored indeed. “This is a really, really big deal to be singing at the MMC,” said RHS Director of Choral Activities David Duiven, seconded by Mandy Scott and echoed by Michigan Composer Jeffrey Cobb. “We will be giving music educators a taste of what you can do with a non-auditioned sophomore level choral group,” added Scott Jeffrey Cobb, is a highly degreed music educator and a much sought after composer of commissioned music. His pieces have garnered several national awards and honors. College ensembles, community groups, and public school students throughout the United States and around the world regularly perform his works for choir, […]

Save on After Grad 2012 party registration, sign up early

October 27, 2011 // 0 Comments

Immediately following graduation ceremonies on June 5, 2012 at the Delta Plex, Rockford High School (RHS) seniors who have registered will attend the After Grad party of the year. Seniors will be transported to a secret location and party all night. They will enjoy food, music, casino games, entertainment and so much more—this is one party you don’t want to miss! Afterwards, seniors will be transported back to RHS. Parents can rest assured that their grads will have a great time in a safe and secure environment. After Grad registration is already underway and the early registration deadline for $50 tickets is only available through Monday, Oct. 31. Sign up now and treat yourself and your senior to the lowest ticket price. After Halloween, tickets increase to $75. Registration forms can be found on the Rockford Public Schools website at by clicking on the After Grad link found on the homepage, as well as in the main office at RHS. In addition, your student can visit registration tables set up during all RHS lunches through Monday, Oct. 31. Registration questions can be directed to Bonnie Ryfiak by e-mail at

Rietsema signs with Aquinas College

March 31, 2011 // 0 Comments

Aquinas College is proud to announce that Catie Rietsema, from Rockford High School, will continue her running career as a Saint. The former All State performer has led the Rams to four top six finishes at the MHSAA Division I state cross country meet, including a third-place finish during her senior season. Rietsema has a personal best of 18:30 on the cross course and career bests on the track of 5:19 (one mile) and 11:28 (two miles). Coach Mike Wojciakowski stated, “Catie comes from a tradition-rich program that focuses on team success. I believe she is an excellent addition to our core group of runners which is being formed here at Aquinas College. Catie has the ability and the work ethic to make an immediate impact on our team.”  

Gremel earns prestigious Morehead-Cain scholarship

March 18, 2010 // 0 Comments

Rockford High School senior Ashley Gremel has been awarded the prestigious Morehead-Cain Scholarship to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This full four-year scholarship is based on merit, moral force of character, commitment to lifelong learning, dedication to fitness and physical activity, and leadership. Of the 1700-plus applicants from throughout the world, less than four percent received this invitation. Students outside of North Carolina must be nominated by an approved nominating institution. Rockford High School received its nominating credentials in 2007 after a vigorous selection process (less than ten schools in the State of Michigan qualify as a nominating school). Rockford High School Principal Dan Zang said, “We are so excited for Ashley; she is a phenomenal young lady! This is the most comprehensive scholarship I have seen in my 22 years in education.” According to the Morehead-Cain Foundation, “The scholarship is truly an experience that will last a lifetime. Over the course of four undergraduate years, Morehead-Cain Scholars begin to forge relationships with a vibrant network of nearly 3,000 Morehead Alumni—some of the most influential and prominent people in a wide array of careers around the globe. Scholars also meet and work with Summer Enrichment Program sponsors in the U.S. and abroad, many of whom become mentors and potential employers. In exchange, Scholars are expected to make a perpetual commitment to lifelong personal growth through hard work, discipline, humility, and compassion. Morehead-Cain Scholars accept rigorous challenges that may intimidate others. They embrace obstacles as opportunities to lead. They understand that with great gifts come even greater responsibilities.” A few of Ashley’s accomplishments in Rockford include: • Founder of Cast Off the Cold (a community service initiative which has donated over 2,000 hand-knit scarves, hats, and mittens to homeless missions throughout West Michigan and Lansing) and subsequently, “United We Knit,” in which 300 hand-knit items were donated to the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans ( • Treasurer of RHS’s Youth Initiative Community Service Club, including fundraising efforts to secure more than $42,000 and recruit volunteers for a Habitat for Humanity project • Coordinator of RHS’s MI blood drive • Four-year letter in swimming, water polo, marching band, and academics • Recipient of the 2010 Congressional Medal of Merit award • Recipient of the Dartmouth […]