San Luis Obispo graduates receive diplomas

Members of the San Luis Obispo High School Class of 2014 accepted their diplomas Friday afternoon as friends, family and teachers gathered to honor their achievements.

“The graduating class of 2014 is full of exceptional students with bright futures ahead,” Principal Leslie O’Connor said. 

The valedictorian was Aurelia Guy, who compiled a 4.63 grade-point average and will attend UC Berkeley. The salutatorian was Kaesha Freyaldenhoven, who had a 4.6 GPA and will attend the University of Chicago. 

Many in the class of 305 students will continue their education at colleges in California and beyond. 

Thirty-nine students will attend Cal Poly, while others will venture to UCLA, San Francisco State, Boston University and Virginia Tech. 

Three students will attend Yale University. One student will enter the Marine Corps, while many others will start their college careers at Cuesta, using the Cuesta Promise to pay for their first semester. 

“This class has leaders like Diana Chiu and Ben Peterson, both worthy recipients of the Principal’s Academic Excellence Award, as well as outstanding students who won awards in the arts, music, athletics and community service,” O’Connor said. “We are very proud of their accomplishments and hope they will continue to have successful lives.” 

Mission College Prep

At Mission College Preparatory Catholic High School, 62 students donned caps and gowns and turned their tassels at a ceremony Friday evening. 

“This year’s senior class is distinctive because of the way they look out for and support one another,” Principal James Childs said. “They are smart and creative and occasionally mischievous in a completely charming way. They have left a great legacy for our underclassmen.” 

Nearly all of the graduates, 98 percent, will attend college. The remaining 2 percent joined the Army, Navy and National Guard.

The colleges they will attend include USC, UCLA, New York University, Pomona College, Cal Poly, St. Mary’s College and UC Berkeley.  

This year, Mission Prep had co-valedictorians: Gregory Conti and Tristram Wilson, both with 4.7 GPAs. The salutatorian, Kelly Scharlach, had a 4.5 GPA. 

Three seniors — Ben Covington, Jessica Mott and Moira Annie Peckham — were honored with the Principal’s Leadership Award for their work as leaders and models in academic achievement, athletics, performing arts, and school and community service.

In all, the graduates garnered more than $2.6 million in scholarships and grants.  

Related stories from San Luis Obispo Tribune