The Class of 2015 graduated from Mt. Edgecumbe High School today (Thu 5-7-15). Ninety-three students marched in cardinal and gold robes, some in high heels and others in mukluks. They sat on the stage of the Sitka Performing Arts Center, facing an audience packed with family and friends. The state-run boarding school accepts students from the across Alaska.
Anchorage senior Tamija Woods gave the valedictory address. The salutatorian, Sabrina Michael of Kwethluk, also spoke. Michael is fluent in Yu’pik and Japanese and wants to study immigration law in the future.
“I want to especially thank the teachers who congratulated me on the fruits of my hard work,” Michael said. “There are many teachers who I adore and I really enjoyed their classes.”
Among those teachers was Dionne Brady Howard, who wore a red and black kuspuk made by a student to resemble the uniform worn by Star Trek’s Captain Picard. She turned her back to the audience to address the class for the last time.
“Hopefully some of you were actually listening – and not doing what you’re so good at doing in class, pretending to listen,” she said, to laughter. “And if you remember some of the things I said today, you’ll always live long and prosper.”
Several generations of Braves were in the audience. Bernard Diasis graduated in 1956. His first wife also attended. He had a granddaughter and a great-grandson graduating this afternoon.
“I am so proud of them,” Diasis said. “You wouldn’t believe it. I am proud of all of them. I’ve very proud of all of them.”
After the ceremony, family, friends, and the newest batch of alumni gathered in the Mt. Edgecumbe cafeteria for a luncheon.