All they needed was a second chance, and for two dozen graduates of the Churchill County Adult Education program, they are ready to take the next step to education and life.
This year’s graduation was held May 17 at the Old High School’s pit, a small, but intimate venue where family and friends filled almost every chair to clap and cheer for the graduates. Many had returned to school after a long absence to study hard, receive a diploma and look toward the future.
During the student portion of the program where a handful of graduates talked about their experience, Thomas Tedder posed a question: What is education?
Instead of dwelling on the developed definition of learning, Tedder labeled education as the realization of truths and for individuals to be more conscientious about their daily lives.
“This is the conclusion I have come to regarding education based on my personal bias and arbitrary decision-making,” he said. “Education is about putting yourself in new experiences to build a new version of yourself.”
Tedder said more potential remains for his classmates, and he thanked his family and teachers for helping him to cultivate a new version of himself.
“I hope we can all continue to pursue a lifelong education together collectively,” he said, adding no matter what people’s beliefs are, they can overcome their separate beliefs for themselves and their children.
Angela Holt, Western Nevada College’s ACCEL program director, offered the graduation address. She said graduation is her favorite day of the year.
“I can relate to the nerves and excitement you’re feeling tonight,” she said. “Everybody is here to celebrate you.”
Holt applauded the graduates and told them of the opportunities that lie ahead in their futures. She said their opportunities are unlimited. Holt noted some of the graduates may be the first in their families who have graduated from high school.
Now, the students take a giant step forward.
“Everyone desires a second chance and can achieve desirable feats with a second chance,” she said.
The student received their diplomas from Summer Stephens, superintendent of Churchill County School District, and walked across the stage to the enthusiastic applause from over 200 people in attendance.
Chantelle Redner, director of the adult diploma program, beamed with pride as each student received a diploma. For some, she spent a semester or year with them … others, she may have spent several years with the students so they could overcome their life’s obstacles and receive a diploma.
Redner said the students have worked hard and dedicated themselves to earn a diploma.
“You’ve come far to overcome hurdles and insurmountable obstacles,” she said. “As your teacher, I am so very proud of you all.”
Ian Robert-Michael Disney
Dakota Hellena Doucette
• Nathan Eugene Dummar
Jordan Wesley Edens
Danely Guadalupe Farfan
• Loretta Fernandez
• John William Fowlkes
• Noemi Samantha Garcia
• Klariana Nicole Gutierrez
• Bailey Laine Kennedy
• Isaiah Alejandro Leon
• Koda Lee McCart
• Lisa Joe Paragin
• Kathleen Anne Parks
• Jessica Perez
• Alyssa Geneva Ramirez
Frank Roos Risco
• Thomas Wayne Tedder
• Alejandra Perez Tejeda
Rebecca Martinez Trinidad
• Halee Jean Vaden
• Shaulina LeeAnn Valencia
• Jacob Anthony Williams
• — Received Adult High School Diploma
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