On Wednesday, August 21, the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District (PYLUSD) presented its 2019 Summer Graduation Ceremony. This inaugural event, which took place in the PYLUSD Board Room, included seven accomplished students who could not graduate with their fellow seniors in June for various reasons, some out of their control.
To begin the ceremony, the graduates beamed as they walked out in their cap and gown to the customary “Pomp and Circumstance” in front of a crowd full of their loved ones.
Honored guests in attendance included Board of Education Vice President, Eric Padget, Clerk, Judi Carmona, and Trustees Karin Freeman and Carol Downey, as well as Superintendent, Dr. Greg Plutko, Deputy Superintendent, Candy Plahy, Assistant Superintendents, David Giordano and Rick Lopez, Executive Director, Richard McAlindin, and Director of High School Education, Cary Johnson. El Camino Real High School Principal, Carey Aiello, Esperanza High School Principal, Gina Aguilar, and Valencia High School Principal, Olivia Yaung, were also there to support their graduating students.
After a warm welcome and the Pledge of Allegiance, Dr. Plutko addressed the graduating students with congratulatory sentiments.
“You now have your diploma. It signifies that you graduated from one of the best high schools in Southern California,” Dr. Plutko shared. “We are proud that you were a part of our team in the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District and all of the work that you’ve done to be here tonight.”
Following, Mr. Johnson verified that the class had met all of the course requirements necessary to earn a diploma from PYLUSD and the State of California. He then invited up Trustee Carmona to share remarks on behalf of the Board.
“These remarkable young people have not let obstacles get in the way of their plans to graduate from high school. Please know how greatly I admire your drive,” she noted. “On behalf of the Board of Education, congratulations most heartedly on this notable success.”
Each graduate then enthusiastically walked across the stage to shake the hand of each honored guest and to receive their diploma from their respective principal.
After the diplomas were distributed, Mrs. Plahy also shared kind words with the graduates.
“American educator Booker T. Washington once stated that, “Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome,” she said. “The graduates before you now have persevered and succeeded. But success is never achieved alone, it requires family, friends and loved ones alongside us who are committed to that success.”
Mrs. Plahy then gifted each graduate with two PYLUSD challenge coins – one to symbolize their own perseverance in pursuit of their high school diploma and one to present to a loved one who helped them along the way.
Mr. Johnson then officially announced the graduates as the Class of 2019. Cheers erupted as this unique graduation ceremony concluded and graduates were sent to be with their loved ones during a small reception.
The Class of 2019 included Casey Hoben, Angie Osorio Martinez, Johanna Rodriguez from El Camino Real High School, Marcos Sanchez and Logan Sato from Esperanza High School, and Breanne Bowers and Kelia Cuamani from Valencia High School.
Congrats, graduates! PYLUSD wishes you the best as you advance on to your next adventure whether it be pursuing a higher education or entering the workforce.