Kauai High School presented 242 diplomas to graduating students in Friday’s commencement ceremony. Family and friends happily packed Vidinha Stadium with umbrellas, signs and balloons to honor the graduates despite intermittent rains and winds.
Class president Ethan Gray was one the several graduates to speak.
“One thing I took away from high school is to always strive for the highest,” said Gray, who will be attending George Fox University in Oregon to study computer science. “If you reach your goal, set a bigger one. Learn in high school and live your life to the fullest.”
Angelika Catiggay was especially excited to graduate.
“Really, your plans are never what they start out to be, it will probably always change,” said Catiggay, who plans to attend University of Hawaii.
“There are going to be people that doubt you, but you can’t just listen to it,” said Jordyn Kahananui, who will be going to the University of Portland to major in electrical engineering after receiving the Howards Academic scholarship for $38,000. “Actually some of my friends have proven everybody wrong. It just motivates me to always do better, always strive to be the best that I can be.”
During high school, graduate Allan Bueno said he learned “not to procrastinate and push through to the end.”
“You just have to take risks and be prepared,” said graduate Keisha Badua.
“It was more about discovering yourself rather than education for me,” said graduate Maddison Long, who wants to become a preschool teacher.
“It doesn’t matter if you get all the smart classes, as long as you can take things that you can actually do,” said graduate Ron Olea, adding “You can learn a lot, it just goes by pretty fast.”
“Take as much classes as you can, make a lot of friends, and try to remember all of them when you graduate and meet up as alumni,” said graduate Grant Urmatam.
Graduate Kharma Stambaugh performed with Kauai Performing Arts Center and Hawaii Children’s Theatre during her time in high school.
“I really like doing it and I like the backstage and onstage work, so I want to pursue more careers in the field,” she said.
Stambaugh plans to major in theater at Western Washington University after earning a $1,000 Arnold Meister Award.
“Do whatever makes you happiest and just have fun doing it and don’t let anyone hold you back,” she added.
John Steinhorst, reporter, can be reached at 245-0435 or firstname.lastname@example.org.