LAUGHLIN — Thirty-eight Laughlin High School seniors walked across the stage Friday, celebrating 13 years of hard work and commitment.
For most, their education won’t stop there.
Around 77% of the graduates are heading into some form of college, and the entire class earned a total of nearly $500,000 in scholarship money.
“To my fellow classmates, we made it,” valedictorian Jason Zenefski said. “All the struggle and stress of high school is finally over. Now it’s time for us to go forward and succeed in the real world.”
“I am happy to say with confidence that the Laughlin class of 2019 is prepared for the future.”
Josh Furr is attending Nevada State College in Henderson, and Sheyenne Batrin plans on going to Mohave Community College and then Southern Utah University.
The list goes on.
Jasmine Donnett and Caitlyn Schelper, during the commencement, thanked family, community members and all those who helped them get to where they are today.
Cheyenne Froderman can attest to this as she said, “If it wasn’t for Ms. Shahan, I wouldn’t have graduated.”
Froderman said she plans to attend Mohave Community College to complete her general requirements and then transfer to the University of Nevada Las Vegas and major in marine biology.
“It is just so exciting I can’t even put it into words,” Froderman said.
The class of 2019 was a tight bunch as there were only 38 of them, and some have been together since kindergarten.
During the ceremony, Alicia Cabanillas, Breanne Bedell, and Haley Artinger honored Michelle Fix, a classmate who would have graduated with them, but died when they were in the seventh grade.
The class wanted to show that Fix was with them always, so they put a photo of the entire class inside the diploma holder and presented it to Fix’s mother, Dorothy.
“It was a beautiful ceremony, and I thank them for keeping her memory alive,” Dorothy Carter said. “It means a lot to me.”
Before the seniors tossed their hats outside, the class let purple balloons go to remember Fix and all those who died while attending Laughlin schools.