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Congratulations to Tucson Unified's Class of 2015
More than 2,800 members of Tucson Unified School District's Class of 2015 graduated this week in ceremonies at campuses all over the city. For those outside, a strong breeze meant holding onto caps tightly as they threatened to fly away—much like many balloons that went skyward Thursday night.
Members of the Class of 2015 are venturing out all over the nation for college, careers and military service. In all, these graduates were offered $87,259,653 in grants and scholarships.
While they may all be going in different directions, they will always have something in common: A high school diploma.
Dr. H.T. Sánchez, superintendent of Tucson Unified School District, told the crowd at Pueblo Magnet High School something that applies to all graduates.
"The great equalizer, the one thing that can't be taken away from you is your education. As long as you have your education you have your dignity," he said. "And when you have your education and your dignity there is nothing you can't accomplish."
The Tucson Unified Communications Team was present at all of the graduation ceremonies. We will be bringing you stories from each ceremony in the coming days. Here are a few to get us started.
The Santa Rita High School auditorium was brimming with excitement as the 2015 seniors spent their last moments as students on campus. There were hugs, tears and high fives among students. One special sight was the Eagle Academy students swarming their credit recovery teacher, Ms Shouse. "She made it fun, and made us feel important," said one of her pupils. "Ms. Shouse saved my life!" Some of the students were more contemplative, wondering what the real world has in store for them. When asked what advice they have for incoming freshman, they simply said, "Don't skip class. Don't slack. Keep on track." It's an important theme as the incoming freshman will be the first class of the Santa Rita Early College High School model, in which students will have the opportunity to graduate with their associate's degree from Pima Community College without ever stepping foot on a PCC campus. These seniors who received their diplomas on the Santa Rita football field Thursday night are headed to college and career. This class of 169 students received a total of over $520,000 in grants or scholarships to take their next steps in everything from theatre arts to the military. "One student found her passion by accident. I needed an elective. I signed up for drama and fell in love." She is set on starting Pima College next semester then transitioning to the U of A. After the diplomas and handshakes, the students could hardly wait to make it official. Following the shift of the tassel, the fireworks flew—literally. Seniors from Ms. O'Neill's senior math class raised funds for a pyrotechnics show that lit up sky and started the new tradition for the Santa Rita Eagles to come.