Deer Valley High graduates Class of 2021 on a warm Friday morning

The Deer Valley High School Class of 2021 graduated in the school’s stadium Friday morning, June 18, 2021. Photos by Jesus Cano

Spent their senior year “All Alone Together”

Senior Class President Sienna Nepacena speaks to her classmates.

By Jesus Cano

Deer Valley High teachers Allison Adkins and Maria McClain both got to work closely with the class of 2021 through their senior year. They both agreed that this year’s graduating class has one thing in common – grit and determination.

They both even think Deer Valley’s yearbook theme – All Alone Together – is a great theme for this school year.

“Many of them rose to the challenge,” Adkins said. “I think it teaches them down the line, that they’re way more flexible and capable of moving.”

“I think because they are a generation of social media, the technological aspect of distance learning, they are still connected because they connect so often with their phone and with Instagram and all of those other things.” McClain said.

Valedictorian Dennis Gavrilenko addresses his fellow graduates.

In spite of scheduling the graduation ceremony in the school’s stadium Friday morning, it was still warm in the sun for the graduates in their caps and gowns.

Antioch Unified School District board president Ellie Householder said the class of 2021 are more technologically ready for anything that comes their way post-graduation, and emphasized in her speech to the graduates that she validates for all the hard work they put in during this virtual year.

But the school’s class of 2021 did get a sense of normalcy, valedictorian Dennis Gavrilenko highlighted in his speech, like him and his volleyball teammates winning the 2021 BVAL boys’ volleyball title. He reminds his class all they learned at Deer Valley.

Even with a rough start, Gavrilenko was proud of the way the class broke through barriers.

Principal Olubukola Oyebade congratulates the graduating seniors.

“I would have never thought that during our junior year, we would have to adjust to distance learning inside our entire senior year, apart from each other. While we were resilient. We were strong, and in the face of all that adversity, we succeeded.” he said.

He also added that as the class of 2021 grows, they are in control of their future.

“As we transition from poverty to our adult lives, I urge you all to never lose your curiosity and fascination in our world,” Gavrilenko said. “We are the ones who must seize the future that we envision for ourselves. It’s up to us to lead others, and to make the world a better place, and I am certain that we will succeed.”

See video of ceremony, later on YouTube. Please check back later for the link.

the attachments to this post:

Principal Olubukola Oyebade

Sienna Nepacena

Dennis Gavrilenko

DVHS Class of 2021 graduates

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