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Congratulations, Class of 2014! CSD high schools hold commencement exercises

For the first time, Canyons District celebrated graduation rites of five traditional high schools. The first-ever graduating class from Corner Canyon, which opened last fall for its inaugural year, joined seniors from Alta, Brighton, Hillcrest and Jordan high schools as members the CSD graduating class. 

Commencement exercises for the five schools were held Tuesday, June 3, 2014. Members of the Board of Education and the CSD Administration wish this year’s graduates good luck and much prosperity. We leave them with these thoughts from Mark Twain:  “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did.  So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”  

Alta High School

What would you do if you knew you would not fail? This was the question – and challenge – posed to Alta High’s Class of 2014 during commencement exercises at Utah Valley University. The high-flying Hawks celebrated in style, walking across the stage in silver and black gowns.

Alta Senior Class President Steven Affleck congratulated his fellow students on their achievements and called the Class of 2014 “one of the greatest graduating classes in Alta history. Look at those next to you and realize that they are what makes us so great.”  Alta, the home of scholars and champions, also boasts a strong reputation of unity, community service and school spirit. “Heart, service, caring – that is what makes Alta the great place it is,” Affleck said.

Soccer star Bizzy Phillips told her classmates that “Alta students have learned through failure. Failure is nothing to be afraid of. We have to experience failure to eventually experience ultimate success. Living is the struggle, failure is the true structure of life. We have been prepared and will go forward knowing how to experience failure, which will ultimately lead to our success.”

See our Facebook photo album of Alta’s graduation ceremony. 

Brighton High School

To applause, Principal Charisse Hilton announced that a whopping $5.8 million in scholarship offers had been earned by graduating seniors. In addition, 69 percent of the graduating class went above and beyond in their studies to earn one of Canyons District’s college- and career-ready diplomas, which signifies that they took rigorous courses and scored high on college-entrance exams.

Hilton also lauded the students’ willingness to serve the community. This year, students raised some $20,000 for the Tyler Robinson Foundation, an organization named after a former student that is dedicated to providing financial aid to families of children who are battling cancer.

Student speaker Adam Woolston urged his fellow graduates to strive forward with determination. “Yesterday we were students. Today we are graduates. Tomorrow, we change the world,” he said. “Thank you Brighton. Make it happen.”

Canyons Board of Education member Kim Horiuchi accepted the members of the class and bid them much luck and happiness on their journeys. “May you forever remember the power of what you’ve learned in your quest for an education,” Horiuchi said. “We wish you much success.”

See our Facebook photo album of Brighton’s graduation ceremony. 

Corner Canyon High School

It was a year of firsts for the Corner Canyon Chargers – and what a year it has been.

In its electric inaugural year, Corner Canyon saw countless successes in the classroom, on the stage and on the playing fields. At the school’s first commencement exercises, held at Utah Valley University, Corner Canyon Principal Mary Bailey congratulated the school’s first graduating class on their achievements and for being the trailblazers of tradition. “You are the legacy of the first,” she said.

In all, 234 students make up the Chargers’ Class of 2014. Those students earned a collective $1.5 million in scholarship offers. Here are some additional achievements of the first seniors to pass through Corner Canyon High’s hallways: Twenty-four received Utah Regent Scholarships, 112 earned one of Canyons District’s Advanced Diplomas, 71 earned a CSD Honors Diploma, 60 students earned Charger Medallions and 172 students earned Honor Cords. Nearly 90 percent of the graduating class, officials, said, expressed plans to attend post-secondary education.

“I have seen greatness in this class of seniors. You know the way and you show the way,” said Sam Barney, Senior Class President.

See our Facebook photo album of Corner Canyon’s graduation ceremony. 

Hillcrest High School

They say that a journey of 1,000 miles starts with a single step. A giant step forward was taken by the some 429 Hillcrest students who walked across the graduation stage at the Maverik Center to accept their diplomas.

Hillcrest Principal Sue Malone congratulated the students on their many academic, artistic and athletic achievements. The Class of 2014 so far had earned a staggering $6.9 million in scholarship offers. That’s not all: Graduates took more than 1,000 AP exams and 500 IB exams. Plus, 82 percent of the graduating class earned one of the unique-to-CSD college- and career-ready diplomas. Students who earn the diplomas must take rigorous courses and score at established benchmarks on college-entrance exams.

Senior Class President Tristan Reeve said the graduates “had a right to feel proud. Look at what we’ve been able to accomplish.” He also urged the graduates to express appreciation for parents, friends, teachers, church members or Boy Scout leaders who had inspired them along the way.

In one of her final graduation addresses before her retirement later this month, Canyons District Interim Superintendent Ginger Rhode told the graduating class to “never let anyone else decide what your worth is … It’s not up to them. It’s up to you.”

See our Facebook photo album of Hillcrest’s graduation ceremony.

Jordan High School

Indeed, it was a great day to be a Beetdigger.

A golden sunset in the western horizon served as a springtime backdrop for Jordan High’s 2014 commencement exercises, which were held in the JHS football stadium. Family and friends packed the stadium to watch the graduates, clad in silver and maroon robes, walk across the stage to accept their hard-earned diplomas.

As the audience watched, the 490 graduates engaged in a back-and-forth song with Principal Sherwood as he addressed the students for the last time of the year. Jordan finished the year with many accolades, including best-in-the-state awards for the faculty, individual track-and-field state winners and the 5A baseball trophy.

See our Facebook photo album of Jordan’s graduation ceremony.

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Lucie Chamberlain

Alta View Elementary

If a movie about super teachers were ever made, Lucie Chamberlain would be a prime candidate for a leading role. Fortunately for her kindergarten students at Alta View Elementary, she already thrives in a supporting role for them. Parents thank her for being a “super teacher.” She is also described as an “amazing colleague.” Whether students need help in the classroom or from home while sick, Lucie goes above and beyond to help them learn, overcome fears, and feel important and cared for. Lucie is the reason a number of kids went from hating school to loving it, according to parents. The way she exudes patience, sweetness, positive energy, and love for her students with special needs melts is appreciated and admired. One parent noted: “Both my kids wish she could be their teacher forever.” Another added:  “She treats every student like their learning and their feelings are her priority.” Super teacher, indeed!

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