Janice Japp '76

“Grades are important and yet, life is more important than grade," – Janice Japp, 1976 valedictorian's advice for current students. Her experience at BPS enabled her to get involved in a lot of different activities, providing insight into those that reflected her natural gifts VS challenged her to move outside her comfort zone.

Favorite teacher?
Miss Edna Mohr, she was a model of dedication to her teaching profession


Favorite Memory at BHS? 

Prom my senior year -- I was a speaker for THE prom banquet ("class prophecy"). The prom, held on the Bellevue Queen, was amazing. This was one of my first experiences in public speaking -- great exposure for a future preacher, like myself.


Education/Work career: 

Most of my professional vocation has been as an ordained minister for The United Methodist Church, serving as a local church pastor in congregations. 


I also am a certified spiritual director and meet regularly with directees. 


Currently I am appointed by the Great Plains Conference of the UMC to serve as Donor Support Director for Camp Fontanelle, which is a church-related ministry located in Washington County. 


Bachelor of Science Degree –University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Master of Divinity – Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University in Dallas

Doctor of Ministry awarded by Wesley Theological Seminary. 

Community Involvement

  • Many groups associated with my church denomination 
  • TeamMates mentor for a couple of students 
  • Former PTO president 
  • Active with some fundraising networks
  • Bennington Alumni Committee 


I've been thinking about new ways to reinvent myself as my retirement looms ahead, so I take seriously the opportunity for "generativity" and giving back to our community when my paid work wraps up.


I'm also looking forward to seeing more of the Badgers through my involvement in the alumni group! Great to see friends from yesteryear.


How did your education/experience at BHS prepare you for your life after graduation?

We had 29 graduates in the class of 1976! It was great to be part of a smaller class and be acquainted with almost everyone in high school. It was also good to get to know so many of the high school teachers who did seem to have the interests of the students at heart. Being involved in lots of different activities provided insight into which activities reflected my natural gifts and which other activities challenged me to move outside my comfort zone.


Advice for current students?

Grades are important and yet, life is more than grades. [spoken by a class valedictorian]

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