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Spirits soar at Santa Rosa High School graduation ceremony

Graduates express gratitude despite COVID-19 obstacle

The Santa Rosa High School Class of 2020 at officially graduated on June 1 at Warrior Stadium. Despite strict COVID-19 guidelines and some unfortunate rain before the event, the ceremony went off as planned. Photos courtesy of Santa Rosa ISD

Special to LFN

SANTA ROSA — Showers might have delayed the start, but it didn’t damper spirits at the Santa Rosa High School Class of 2020 Warrior Graduation Ceremony on June 1. In fact, there was literally a rainbow after the rain.

Though the bleachers were sparse with people due to the guest limit, the event still carried on with excitement. Donned in face masks, 65 seniors walked onto the platform as students and walked off as graduates.

SRHS Student Council President Paolo Trevino led the ceremony while Valedictorian Cameron Cuevas, Salutatorian Cassandra Canal and Senior Class President Daisy Hernandez inspired their classmates with speeches.

Cuevas told his classmates that they were “overcomers” and reminded them of the lesson the COVID-19 pandemic taught them.

“Life is unpredictable, so be able to adapt to the changing world,” Cuevas said.

Cuevas also left his classmates with the wisdom from Confucius.

“Our greatest story is not in never failing but in rising every time we fail,” he said. “Class of 2020, I hope you always choose to rise because in doing so you will reach true success.”

Hernandez expressed the general sentiment of appreciation in her speech.

“Unfortunately, our senior year was cut short, and we were not able to create and share those moments that make lasting memories … but tonight we have the opportunity to be walking across the stage to receive our diplomas together,” Hernandez said.

Santa Rosa Independent School District Board President Santos Castaneda said the pandemic made the Class of 2020 “stronger and more resilient.” She advised them to never fear change.

“Change is what keeps the world moving forward. It is uncomfortable, but it is worth it,” Castaneda said.

Trevino, the mistress of ceremonies, was grateful her district held an in-person ceremony instead of a virtual ceremony because it allowed her to be among her classmates again.

“Santa Rosa’s Class of 2020 has one thing that no one will ever take away, and that’s unity,” Trevino said. “What I will take away from this graduation is that I have 64 brothers and sisters who will be there for me no matter what, and that we all want the best for one another.”

Trevino plans to earn a bachelor’s and master’s degree in education from the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley and then a doctorate from the University of Texas at Austin.

Juliet Salce said, “A lot has been taken away from us this year, many opportunities, but I believe it helped prepare us. As we enter adulthood, it was a perfect lesson for all of us to learn: to be thankful for what we have and what we have all been through together.”

Salce plans to attend Texas A&M University-Kingsville for her undergraduate degree and then study veterinary medicine at Texas A&M University.

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