The 2014 graduation at Cambria’s Coast Union High School at 1:30 p.m. today, June 12, marks the crowning achievement of 62 seniors marching into the ceremony in the gymnasium and then off into their future in a swirl of red academic robes and caps with golden tassels and trim.
Valedictorian Sergio Mendoza and Salutatorian Alison Brunschwiler both plan to attend UC Davis, according to school records. Mendoza’s cumulative weighted GPA was 4.21; Brunschwiler’s was 4.2.
Among the other 60 grads are 39 who plan to go to Cuesta College, four attending college in Chico, three headed for Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, two to Santa Barbara City College, two to Sonoma State, two to UC Santa Cruz and one each to tech school, Cal Poly Pomona and UCSB.
“This was an exceptional class,” said counselor Cheryl Seay, “but we’re fortunate at Coast, because all our classes are exceptional.”
The 2014 class includes 10 Golden Seal Merit Awards, an unusually high number, she said. Graduating seniors qualify for the award by receiving 370 points or more on six of the California STAR exams, and those six must include English, math, science and U.S. history.
Community members apparently agree — by June 5, more than $90,000 worth of scholarships and grants had been donated, Seay said, with others expected. Every student who applied for a local grant received one, she said, and other scholarships went to a diverse assortment of college-bound seniors.
Leffingwell High School’s commencement ceremony was set for Wednesday, June 11, after this week’s Cambrian went to press. It was set to honor three graduates — Leffingwell’s entire senior class for 2014: Valedictorian Eduardo Alvarez, Alex Corona and Marco Garcia.
According to Leffingwell teacher Grant Phillips, Alvarez plans to attend Cuesta College’s automotive technology program. Garcia is working, but wants to attend Cuesta part time so he can take courses in welding and general education. Corona hasn’t yet specified his future educational plans, Phillips said.
Leffingwell is an alternative-education continuation high school with a hands-on approach and lots of connections with area entrepreneurs, service clubs and nonprofits. The school’s concept is enthusiastically supported by community members, evident in the 11 scholarships, totaling $4,300, to be awarded this year. Phillips said Alvarez was the only Leffingwell senior to apply this year, so he will receive all $4,300 in educational support.
Santa Lucia Middle School also held its graduation ceremony Wednesday evening, June 11.
Follow Kathe Tanner on Twitter at @CambriaReporter.