A total of 48 students in the Class of 2017 graduated on May 26 from the Vance County Early College High School.
Their commencement ceremony was held before a packed crowd in the Civic Center at Vance-Granville Community College near Henderson.
Kristen Oakes, shown in the third photo at the podium, gave the valedictorian address as the top graduate in the Class of 2017. Oakes will attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the fall. Jacob Weaver addressed his classmates and the audience as the salutatorian. He also will attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the fall.
Oakes and Weaver were joined in the graduating class as the top 10 percent academically by Christopher Brame, who will attend UNC Chapel Hill, Sierra Hawkins, who will attend Salem College, and Janet Rodriguez-Morales, who will attend East Carolina University.
Of the high school graduates, 31 students also received either an associates degree in arts or science. There were eight students who received both an associates degree in arts and an associates degree in science. Forty-seven of the graduates will attend a four-year college, university or a community college in the fall. One graduate is joining the U.S. Marine Corps.
Those students who earned an associates degree will enter their college or university in the fall as juniors.
Their experience in the Vance County Early College High School allowed them to receive their first two years of college coursework at no cost to them or their parents.
The presentations of diplomas, degrees and certificates were led by: Principal Debbie Hite; Superintendent Anthony Jackson; Dr. Stelfanie Williams, president of Vance-Granville Community College; and Dr. Angela Ballentine, vice president of academic affairs at Vance-Granville Community College.
Graduates of Early College for 2017 include in addition to the top 10 percent students: Celene Acuna, Jasmine Allen, Christopher Ayscue Jr., Megan Ayscue, Keana Baskerville, Je’Ronee Blackwell, Christopher Blue, Lauren Chavis-Hargrove, David Cobbs Jr., Ashlyn Collier, Chadstity Copeland, Erika Decena-Santos, Alexis Hanks, Mya Hargrove, Hayden Harris, William Harris, Robert Hawkins IV, Ronald Renteria, Tia Johnson, Mychell Keith, Darius Macon-Majette, Jaylil Majette, Nyesha Miller, Michelle Dominguez, Xavier Perry, Bali Reavis, Autumn Richardson, Tara Roberson, Kellie Robinson, Stephon Sample, Alexandra Saravia, Rebecca Short, Timonty Terry Jr., Alicia Tucker, Christian Vazquez, Angel White, Darius Williams, Malik Williams, Hailey Williamson, Jordan Williamson, Amber Wilson, Anautica Wilson and April Zuniga-Trejo.
Serving as graduation marshals were Nancy Bonilla, Ke’Moni Champion, Zenee Davis, Nealee Fisher, Lehman Ford, Luke Frazier, Victoria Inscoe, Lillian Kanouff, Seth Moody and Suzanne Williams.