By Mary O’KEEFE
Another Crescenta Valley High School class has donned the traditional light and dark blue caps and gowns, sat nervously, searched the crowd for family members and waited for their chance to walk across that stage on June 16.
“What makes us different?” asked senior Varun Bhadha.
Bhadha stood at the podium at Stengel Field and addressed the class, reminding them of their time at CVHS, asking what made their class different from those of other schools.
“What makes us truly unique, though, is the tradition, honor and pride thing,” he said of the school’s motto. “At first, I didn’t understand it. Are we honorable with our tradition of pride? Do we have the tradition of honorable pride or are we proud of our tradition of being honorable?”
What he discovered was that it is all of that and more.
“We are proud and rightly so of our inherited Falcon traits,” he said.
Thursday’s graduation was the first for Principal Michele Doll.
“It was wonderful,” Doll said. “What is magical and different about [CVHS] graduation is that it is done at Stengel Field which is rich in tradition for the community.”
In addition to having so many students in programs like Academy of Science and Medicine, Robotics, drama and its strong sports program, the Class of 2011 earned over 60,000 community service hours and took 1,769 Advanced Placement tests.
The graduation ceremony was full of happy, tearful parents and seniors ready to start their new life.
Abby Brown’s family got to the field early, making certain to get a front row seat. They held up a sign that read, “Congratulations Abby! Get ready for U.C.L.A.”
“We are proud of her,” said her mother.
The day had begun with an early morning rehearsal at Stengel Field. The soon-to-be graduates practiced when to sit, stand and when to move toward the stage. It all paid off as not a beat was missed and the ceremony that began at 5:30 p.m. ran like clockwork.
Graduation is a time to reflect on the past and look toward the future. Many in the audience of seniors hugged fellow students and even their teachers as they walked out to greet family.
Bhadha reminded his fellow classmates that they are now going into the world and that it would not be easy.
“I do not need to tell you that we have inherited a mess. Two wars, a paralyzed government and sluggish economy,” he said.
He added that, in a way, he appreciated the state of the country.
“Throughout time, groups of motivated youth have overthrown corrupt governments, initiated technological advances and changed the face of the earth against all odds,” he said.
Changing the world is something for the future because on Thursday all the seniors wanted to do was take pictures with friends, celebrate with family and go to grad night held at Magic Mountain.
As the CVHS seniors ended their high school career, Rosemont Middle School students began theirs at a promotion earlier that same day.
Six hundred and fifty four students received their promotion certificates and are ready for their freshman year at their chosen high school.