AHS Students Awarded Heismans

AHS Students Awarded Heisman for Outstanding Character
Posted on 12/01/2022

Please direct inquiries to

Darrell Gleason, Communication Specialist, Alleghany Highlands Public Schools (540) 863-1800, [email protected]





AHS Students Awarded Heismans for Outstanding Character

COVINGTON — Alleghany High School seniors Sidney Donnan and Garrett Via were recently named school winners in the Heisman High School Scholarship competition awarded by The Heisman

Trophy Trust and Acceptance Insurance. 

The competition is modeled after the Heisman Memorial Trophy awarded each December to the nation’s most outstanding college football. The Heisman High School program extends the same prestige to high school seniors across the nation by recognizing outstanding scholar-athletes who make a positive impact on their school and community.     


To qualify for the recognition this year, a student must be on track to graduate with the Class of 2023 and have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better. The student must also have participated in grades 9, 10, or 11 in at least one of the sports recognized by the International Olympic Committee, the Paralympic Games, or the National Federation of State High School Associations. The student must also demonstrate leadership in school and the community.  


“Sidney and Garrett are both well deserving of this recognition. I could not be more excited for them. They have achieved success not only in the classroom but on the field of play.

Further, they are tremendous ambassadors for our school and community,” said Bryan Stinespring, activities director for Alleghany Highlands Public Schools.    


Donnan is a daughter of Bob and Mary Donnan of Covington. During her years at AHS, she has been a cheerleader, a member of the swim team, and a member of the soccer team. Donnan is also active in the National Honor Society, the Beta Club, and the Foreign Language Club.


Donnan has served her community as a volunteer in several ways. At the Alleghany Regional Library, she has worked with children who struggle with reading. She has delivered food to shut-ins in the Highlands and helped restore the Helen Childs Wildflower Garden at Fort Young Park in Covington. Donnan has also volunteered her time at the Alleghany Highlands Christmas Mother Shop.  


She plans to attend a four-year college or university.


Via, who has played football, baseball and basketball at AHS, is the son of Ricky and Michelle Via of Clifton Forge.


In the recently-completed football season, Via set single-season school records for yards rushing, 1,816; rushing touchdowns, 25; and total yards from scrimmage, 1,914. He plans to attend college and play football.


Via is a member of the Outdoor Club and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.


As a volunteer in the community, he has served as Little League Baseball assistant coach and helped with the AHS Football Camp by working with the running backs group. Via has also served as a volunteer at the Clifton Forge School of the Arts by leading a woodworking class for children.


He is undecided about his career goals.  


From an applicant pool of thousands of high school scholar-athletes, school winners continued on for the chance to become state winners in the Heisman High School Scholarship competition. State winners were announced on Nov. 4. State winners receive a $1,000 college scholarship. The national winners will be named on Nov. 30. They will receive a $10,000 scholarship.


Since 1993, the High School Scholarship program has honored more than 600,000 of the nation’s most esteemed high school seniors and provided more than $1 million in college scholarships to students throughout the United States.



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