Emma Critchlow is proof that it’s never too late to start again.
Once she put her mind to it, nothing could stop this Brighton High senior from crossing the commencement stage with her peers not homelessness, financial constraints, nor even the daunting task of making up a year’s worth of school credits lost due to chronic truancy.
Critchlow is now poised to study dental hygiene at Weber State University with an eye toward enrolling in dental school and specializing in orthodontics. And she’ll have a little help paying for it with a $2,500 scholarship from the Canyons Education Foundation.
The Bengal is just one of the 2,540 students from CSD’s high schools Alta, Brighton, Corner Canyon, Hillcrest, Jordan, Entrada, Diamond Ridge and the South Park Academy at the Utah State Prison who are receiving diplomas this year. Commencement rites are being held this month at various locations.
In addition, 62 percent of graduating seniors this year earned Honors or Advanced diplomas by challenging themselves with more rigorous coursework.
Canyons’ Advanced and Honors Diploma program is a way to encourage students to go above and beyond the state requirements for graduation. Canyons is Utah’s first school district to award students differentiated diplomas to indicate college- and career-readiness.
Critchlow is among those who earned a CSD Honors Diploma. For her smarts, grit and can-do attitude, Critchlow was awarded the Foundation’s $2,500 Rising Star scholarship at a recent annual fundraising gala.
The Foundation also gave several $1,000 scholarships to student who overcame significant obstacles to achieve academically. Those students are Alta High’s Elias John Estacion, Brighton’s Jennifer Hill, Corner Canyon’s Alexis Redden, Hillcrest’s Ronaldo Herrera, and Jordan’s Abigail Jensen.
The Foundation scholarships are made possible with the generous support of Canyons District’s corporate and community partners. They are reserved for students who have been homeless, who are the first high school graduates in their families, or who have had to learn a new language at the same time they learned their multiplication tables. In short, they are for students who have shown they’ve got what it takes to shine, to succeed at college and to reach their career goals, no matter how far off they may seem.