IE Grapevine Updates

Great Oak seniors celebrate graduation on June 5, 2014

June 5,2014 is a day that parents, students, and teachers alike will remember for many days to come.

On this day, the seniors of Great Oak High School’s 2014 graduating class finally said goodbye to the place they had come to know so well over the past four years.

After a ceremony that included stunning performances, captivating speeches, and a cheerful Tassel Ceremony led by class salutatorian Richard Lee, the new graduates tossed their caps high into the air, letting the world know that they were ready for life. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights from this spectacular event.

Great Oak’s pre-ceremony show was full of spectacular talent from the senior class of 2014. Students Daniel Rubiano, Kristine Legaspi, Jade Clancy, Riley Nguyen, and Alyssa Eberle of the Great Oak Winter guard put on a wonderful performance to “Dog Days are Over” by Florence and the Machine.

Next up was a duo consisting of vocalist Lindsey Cargill and guitarist Julian Hernandez with an astounding acoustic version of “Wherever You Will Go” by Charlene Soraia. Showing off her musical brilliance, piano virtuoso Sharmini Premananthan blew us all away with her performance of Frederic Chopin’s “Etudes Opus 25: No.1 in A Flat Major.”, followed up by a powerful cover of “The House That Built Me.” by Miranda Lambert, sung by Katelyn Kelley.

Taking the stage next was Jahdai Jackson, putting on a showstopping Step Dance routine to the “Rugrats Krump Remix”. And wrapping up the pre-ceremony with were performances by Mackenzie Vonasek, Kyleigh Camp, and Mikyla Kerr, singing “My Wish” by Rascal Flatts, followed up by Noah Green blowing us away, singing “I Know I’ve Been” from the hit musical Hairspray. And last, but certainly not least, was Bridget Parish, with her incredibly performance of “This is My Now” by Jordan Sparks.

As the Procession of Graduates came to a close, everyone was warmly welcomed by WSB presidents Joshua Constant, Lexi Provost, and Katelyn Starbuck, officially kicking of the graduation ceremony. Of course, no graduation ceremony can truly begin without an amazing rendition of the National Anthem, which Avelaka Macarro won us over with as we stood with our hands over our hearts. It was then that things really kicked into gear.

The speakers of Great Oak’s senior class had plenty to say to their fellow graduates, as Roge Karma, Natalie Bayer, Emica Norris, and Johnathan Balcon graced the stage with their energetic speeches, telling us tales of successes, hardships, and sleepless nights spent finishing projects that were assigned months before their due date. The Valedictorians of the 2014 class had plenty so as well, as Kelly Von Zup, Tristan Griggs, Athena Konicki, and Hyo Jin Park enlightened us on what it was like on the 4 year road to graduation. Complimenting the speeches was a lovely acoustic cover of “Que Sera Sera” by Doris Day sung by Taylor Tickner, whose performance was nothing short of memorable.

Superintendent of Schools Kenneth M. Young made it clear just how special this graduation ceremony was by expressing his fascination with the student run event, stating how the Great Oak ceremony has always been his favorite over all other ceremonies in over 200 high schools. How many schools can say they have a superintendent that carries their graduation robe to every high school ceremony?

And of course, no graduation ceremony would be complete without the Awarding of Diplomas. Hundreds of friends and family members watched as the graduating students that they know and love walked up to receive their diplomas. They cheered and cried tears of joy all throughout the ceremony. After a congratulations by co-principal Marc Horton, and a performance of “Feeling Good” by Michael Buble performed and sung by Dylan Sheidt, the graduating seniors turned their tassels and threw their caps sky-high, signifying that they were no longer seniors, but high school graduates.

Overall, the graduation ceremony of Great Oak High School’s class of 2014 was an exciting and wonderful night, and one of the best graduation ceremonies that I have witnessed. Congratulations to the class of 2014, and may good fortune come to you in the years to come!

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