Normal U High triplets graduate as valedictorians

By WEEK Reporter

May 18, 2014 Updated May 19, 2014 at 9:32 AM CDT

NORMAL, Ill. -- Graduation is a milestone and it is not always easy to do. However, triplets at University High School in Normal did it, all coming out on top.

Fraternal triplet valedictorians Charlea, Hannah and Ethan Schueler. These siblings at fought for a 4.0 grade point average all four years.

"It was a goal for all of us to be valedictorians," said Charlea, who her siblings call the "energetic" one.

"We were excited that we had actually reached that goal," said Ethan, the only boy.

"Not everyone can say they were valedictorian of their high school," said Hannah, the "happy" one. "And I know I'm not alone in this either."

They are three of 21 students graduating at the top of their class. The triplets say they are inseparable.

"You just go to each other. I think that's the main thing. You always have someone to go to," explained Hannah. "Your best friend may not always be there but your sibling will be."

That is exactly what they are, siblings. With brothers and sisters sometimes comes sibling rivalry.

"We are very competitive. We try to beat each other on who can get the best grade," said Charlea. "But we always support each other and are happy to see each other do well."

"They're extraordinarily competitive," said U High English teacher and department head Mark Adams. "They compete with each other on a regular basis."

Mr. Adams is their speech and debate coach and their teacher.

"There's always students you can count on for always taking the 'excellence' choice," said Adams. "And those three were those students."

This is the first time he's ever seen triplet valedictorians. These triplets not only study they do music, speech, debate, golf, softball and more. they say they could not achieve their goals and success alone.

"The teachers here are willing to put in as much as your willing to put in," said Ethan. "That's what i like about U High, what it has offered for us."

"U High has pushed us to be well-rounded people," said Charlea.

They also tipped their hat to the people who they say taught them almost everything.

"My parents," said Hannah. "They're really motivating."

"They always push us to do our best," said Ethan.

Charlea and Hannah will be continuing their education at Illinois State University and Ethan will go to Washington University.