The Hotchkiss Class of 2013 completed its commencement exercises with vigor on Saturday.
Glen Suppes, dean of students, announced that the graduates had already earned 1,112 college credits through the Early Scholars program.
That equals savings of $303,576 toward their college degrees. Colorado Mesa University, Western Colorado Community College in Grand Junction and Colorado Northwestern Community College in Rangely participated in the program.
Real-money scholarships earned by the graduating class were approximately $818,148, with additional scholarships and financial aid to be announced later.
"Hotchkiss High School would like to thank our local and area businesses and organizations for their continued support of these graduates. Without your help many of these students cannot attend these post-secondary institutions," Suppes said.
Coach Doug Horton presented H Blankets to Kati Evans and Conner Beard. They are athletes who have earned the most points throughout their high school career. Points are awarded from 16 different categories.
Valedictorian Mason Oxford thanked his teachers, his parents and his peers. "Find your calling in life and then do it like you mean it," he told his classmates. He encouraged them to find a purpose in their life and to do it with purposefulness and determination.
"In 2012 the National Center for Education Statistics estimated that 78 percent of students across the United States earned a diploma within four years of starting high school. This year Hotchkiss High School is going to graduate 61 out of 61 students, 100 percent," valedictorian Josh Hardin said. "Congratulations. We didn't leave anyone behind."
Salutatorians Kati Evans and Savannah Rocha shared their thoughts on graduation. Rocha looked back at the four years of high school. "Even though this school has had an impact on us, we leave it all behind today. From here we can become anyone we want to be," Rocha said.
"Well class we made it to the finish line. We've managed to complete an important stage in life, and boy did we pass with the flying colors of red and white," Evans said. "We've all reached this point together."
Glen Suppes thanked the Class of 2013 for seeking him out in their time of need. "As you looked for a graduation speaker, you thought to yourselves, 'Who do we know to speak the honest truth in the shortest amount of time possible while looking dashing in a suit?'" Suppes put on a bright red suit with satin lapels for the speech. He then drew upon his favorite movies to exhort the graduating class about service, relationships, confidence in goal setting and being an adventurer. He concluded, "I wish for you the best."blog comments powered by Disqus