YADKINVILLE — Yadkin Early College celebrated its 2014 commencement ceremony on Friday at Peace Haven Baptist Church with guest speakers Emily Goins and senior Milca Jarquin and a rainbow arcing high above the church.
2014 Marshals were John Biondi, Yahaira Guadarrama, Yasidhi Huerta,Winter Gary, Marisol Guillen and Anna Mullis.
Dr. Todd Martin, superintendent of Yadkin County Schools, welcomed graduates and guests. Principal Tracy Kimmel and Patricia Andrews handed out awards.
Kimmel said, “Tonight we celebrate our graduate’s academic accomplishments as we award diplomas..and tonight we honor them as they start the next step in their educational journey.”
Kimmel added, “Our school family is better because you decided to be part of it.”
Kimmel specifically honored Austin Towner for superhero qualities; Luis Aguilera for his work with the dream act to help improve the lives of Latino students, Amber Dorn and Edith Gonzalez for work in the community; and Amy Cheek, Milca Jarquin, and Laken Macemore for earning an Associate’s in Arts and Science from Surry Community College. Kimmel applauded with the crowd a host of honor graduates. Twenty graduated with Associate degrees from Surry Community College.
Kimmel added all are “very special students” at Yadkin Early College.
President of Surry Community College Dr. David Shockley was at the graduation honoring the students with SCC degrees.
Kimmel challenged the class to to continue their academic prowess and community involvement in his speech delivery to the student.
Keynote speaker Goins, a former student, reminded the 42 graduates how important she had found it to be to use her voice she was taught while at Yadkin Early College.
“Speak up and let your voice be heard. I believe in you, now it is time for you to believe in yourself,” Goins encouraged.
Jarquin, now with an Associate’s in Arts and Science from SCC in hand, called her peers special people and challenged them to take full advantage of full opportunities that lie ahead.
Memories, friends including peers and teachers and a chance for a better future, said Jarquin should remain high priority. She then read quotes from “Oh, the Places You Will Go,” by Dr. Seuss.
Students were allowed to allowed to decorate their hats and some did it with good humor and slogans like, Later Nerds and Mischief Misplaced. They said they enjoyed that freedom of expression offered by the school.