Graduates Look to their Future

Clark Magnet and Crescenta Valley high schools bid farewell to nearly a thousand graduates while Rosemont promotes its class to the next level.

Photo by Charly SHELTON
After receiving their diplomas, many of the graduating Crescenta Valley students had a chance to share thank yous and goodbyes with their former principals at the high school, middle school and elementary school levels.


It was a bittersweet day yesterday, Wednesday, for many parents and children as commencement and graduation ceremonies took place across the Crescenta Valley.

For parents and loved ones of graduating students, it was a time of reflection as they watched the next phase of their children’s journey begin. For students, it signaled the end to a road in education that many had traveled locally, from nearby elementary schools, then middle school and finally high school.

Most public elementary schools held promotion ceremonies on Tuesday. Wednesday morning saw Rosemont Middle School promote their eighth grade students while Crescenta Valley and Clark Magnet high schools held graduation ceremonies in the early evening.

Rosemont Middle School Principal Scott Anderle presided over his first promotion celebration as a principal.

“For me, this [year] has been awesome,” Anderle said.

It had not all been smooth sailing however; this school year Anderle and his staff had to deal with two threats to the school made by students. Anderle said that handling those threats was not easy, but it does appear to be a sign of the times. A friend of Anderle’s who is a principal at a school in another state had to deal with 20 threats during the same school year.

“We took the threats very seriously and the kids who made the threats found there were repercussions,” he said.

He thinks the message has gone out that all threats are investigated and dealt with by the school district and law enforcement.

Anderle’s hope is that a few negative incidents do not overtake the number of “amazing things” that have taken place at Rosemont since August.

“Our sports programs are [successful] with many [teams] going undefeated,” he said. “Our basketball team competed in tournaments and our band received all-state honors.”

In addition, Rosemont students secured a respectable showing in the district’s spelling bee, and have won many commendations throughout the year.

“Our butterfly garden that was started as a Girl Scout Gold Award project is now being [maintained] by a club on [campus],” he said. “We even had CV [Crescenta Valley High School] students who help with a coding class after school. We have 10 to 15 kids coding.”

He went on to praise all the clubs on campus, including the robotics and speech and debate clubs, both competed in several events and placed well.

“We have a record number of kids in CJSF [California Junior Scholarship Federation],” Anderle said. “And our Builders Club has volunteer hours [numbering] in the thousands.”

All-in-all, the school year has been very positive. The volleyball team was able to get a new net and equipment thanks to the Mary Pinola educational grant program and Anderle has found his middle school “sea legs,” so to speak.

He has gotten to know the Ralph’s Marketplace very well, spending a lot of time at Togos and Starbucks, monitoring students. He has responded to every call from parents and has built a strong relationship with students. He has received high marks from seventh graders who are very happy to be spending another year with him.

“He is the greatest principal I have ever had,” said Michael Balian.

“He’s a good principal. He is always treating people well. If you do something bad he will talk to you and ask why you did it,” added Andres Bacanegra.

That willingness to listen seemed to be the theme with the seventh graders.

“He is understanding … He lets you talk,” said Allan Manukyan.

“He is very supportive,” said David Green, who knew Anderle from the time he was with Student Services at the district. “He helped me get into my elementary school and then Rosemont. I had to switch districts and he helped me.”

The promoting eighth grade class was saying goodbye to Anderle as they prepared to move on to high school. The four student speakers at the promotion on Wednesday morning had to first submit their essays to a panel of 12 that was made up of teachers, administrators and alumni from Rosemont. The speakers chosen were Sienna Noordermeer, Maneh Davityan, William Lunt and Lauren Curtis. There were 667 Rosemont eighth graders who were promoted.

On Wednesday at 5:30 p.m., Crescenta Valley High School held its commencement. There were 641 graduates in the Class of 2018. The class leaves school after fulfilling 53,281 community service hours and earning $1.5 million in scholarships and grants. Class valedictorian was Richard Lee who earned a 4.64 grade point average.

The student speakers, also chosen for their essays, were Gene Kim and Sione Markarian.

Making this year extra special was an invitation by Principal Linda Junge to principals and staff members from local “feeder schools” including Fremont, Monte Vista and Lincoln elementary school. The principals were Christin Molano, Suzanne Risse and Stephen Williams. She also invited former Rosemont principal Cynthia Livingston. They were there to witness the graduation of many of their former students.

Glendale Unified School District Board Vice President Jennifer Freemon and Board Clerk Armina Gharpetian received the Class of 2018, joined by GUSD Asst. Superintendent Dr. Cynthia McCarty Foley and Glendale Community College Board of Trustees member Tony Tartaglia.

The commencement at Clark Magnet High School was held at the same time as CVHS. The Class of 2018 had 274 members – the largest class in the school’s history – who fulfilled 28,908 community service hours. The valedictorian was Areni Markarian, whose grade point average is 4.54. Student speakers were Jasmine Mirbasoo; the title of her speech was “A Lesson on Life.” Gabriella Kchozyan also spoke on “iGraduate.”

For the first time in Clark’s history, the keynote speaker was someone outside the district, David George Gevorkyan. He was among the first graduating class at Clark, the Class of 2001. He now serves as special assistant and field deputy in the executive office of Los Angeles County’s Office of the Assessor.

After graduating from Clark, Gevorkyan attended Glendale Community College and Los Angeles Valley College then transferred to California State University -Northridge to earn a degree in Political Science.

Gevorkyan was selected from thousands of candidates by Harvard University where he successfully completed the Kennedy School of Government’s on-campus executive program for “Senior Executives in State and Local Government.” He also has successfully completed the University of Southern California’s (USC) Price School Executive Education in Public Policy program.

Photos by Mary O’KEEFE, Charly SHELTON and Jessy