Dozier-Libbey Medical High sends off 152 graduates in Class of 2024

The Dozier-Libbey Medical High School Class of 2024 graduates toss their hats to celebrate on Thursday, June 6, 2024. Photos by Allen D. Payton

By Allen D. Payton

During Thursday night’s graduation ceremony for Antioch’s Dozier-Libbey Medical High School (DLMHS) Class of 2024, held in the Deer Valley High School quad amphitheater, Antioch Unified School District President Antonio Hernandez, a DLMHS graduate, offered remarks to the graduates.

He shared of his own experience at the high school then in college, and now in grad school saying, “Setbacks and failures will take you to unexpected routes…that can take you to where you want to go.”

“I know that you all have been through so many struggles and serious challenges. It’s important to celebrate these moments you have…with friends and family and all those who supported you along the way,” Hernandez stated. “We can change the world, overnight, immediately. How long are you going to wait to make that change?”

DLMHS 2024 Valedictorian Belinda Barreras speaks to her classmates.

The first student speaker was Alexandra “Alex” Brewer followed by DLMHS Class of 2024 Valedictorian Belinda Reyes Barreras. She spoke with her fellow graduates saying, “Crossing this stage will honor every challenge we faced. We graduate on behalf of any loved one who has shown us support. Our high school journeys have reached their final growth phase. We are the upcoming generation of adults. We can invoke immense change. We must persevere and take on any challenge. I’m sure DL has prepared us to take on any challenge. Congratulations Class of 2024. We did it!”

Alina Nguyen Duong was this year’s Salutatorian for DLMHS.

Principal Karen Clark spoke to the graduating class next. “Today is a day filled with excitement, joy and pride as we gather here to celebrate the culmination of four years of hard work, dedication and growth,” she said. “It is an honor to stand before you as we reflect on the challenges you have overcome, and we look forward to the journey that awaits you beyond these walls.”

“When you entered Dozier-Libbey Medical High School, you knew you were embarking on a unique educational path by choosing a high school with a focus on health and patient care,” Clark continued.

She then spoke of the COVID lockdown and distance learning.”

“The challenges you faced…have forever shaped all of us. You adapted to a new normal…and you forged ahead with determination. Your parents and teachers became your allies,” Clark stated. “Your sophomore year we were granted the opportunity to return to in-person learning. We realized the significance of human connection and face-to-face interactions.

“As you prepare to step into the world beyond high school, it is our hope that Dozier-Libbey Medical High School has instilled the importance of compassion, empathy and understanding, the very qualities that will define your success in navigating the complex world of healthcare or other professions,” she continued.

Many of the DLMHS 2024 grads decorated their caps with messages including one with the character Groot from the Guardians of the Galaxy movies.

“Be the change. Congratulations. The future is yours to shape. Go forward with compassion, excellence and an unwavering commitment to your future goals,” Clark concluded.

Acting Superintendent Dr. Rob Martinez accepted the class saying, “On behalf of the Antioch Unified School District, it is my distinct honor to accept the 2024 graduating class from Dozier-Libbey Medical High School. Upon the recommendation of the faculty and on behalf of the…Board of Education, I certify that each of you has completed the graduation requirements set forth by the…District.

“Having completed these requirements, I confer upon each of you the high school diploma with all its rights, honors and responsibilities.

Henceforth you are to be considered high school graduates and alumni of Dozier-Libbey Medial High School in the Antioch Unified School District.


The DLMHS 2024 grads line up to receive their diplomas from school board Trustees Antonio Hernandez and Mary Rocha.

The graduates’ names were read by DLMHS Leadership Advisor Heather Pool as Board President Hernandez and Vice President Mary Rocha presented each with their diploma. One graduate, Alexandra Guevara, received the greatest applause from both her classmates and the audience as she was helped by her mother, Maria to receive her diploma. During a traffic collision on May 15, 2022, Alexandra experienced a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Her older sister Samantha Guevara shared what Alexandra said to her saying, “She went through a difficult time following the accident.” It was “a year of recovery. She proved to others and herself that she could manage to graduate and on time with her class. She will continue to move forward to become a better version of herself and spread awareness to other TBI patients.”

DLMHS Leadership Advisor Heather Pool (left) joins Principal Karen Clark as she was presented her gift from the Class of 2024 represented by President Matilda McCarthy (right).

“This is Ms. Clark’s last and final commencement,” Pool stated.

Class President Matilda McCarthy then presented the principal with a gift from the Class of 2024 in the form of a T-shirt signed by each of the graduates.

Clark then said, “I’m certifying the Class of 2024 graduates.”

“Let’s take a moment to remember what we’ve overcome,” McCarthy said to her classmates. She then shared something her mother taught her. “Work hard, now so it will pay off later.”

“Don’t stop here. Keep going,” she added.

Graduates of the DLMHS Class of 2024 turn their tassels.

McCarthy then led her classmates in the turning of their tassels, signifying the end of their high school career, followed by cheers and the obligatory tossing of caps into the air.

The Herald congratulates the Dozier-Libbey Medical High School Class of 2024 graduates. May God bless you in your future!

the attachments to this post:

DLMHS 2024 grads line up for diplomas

DLMHS 2024 grad caps

DLMHS 2024 grads toss caps

DLMHS Class of 2024 grads

DLMHS 2024 Valedictorian Belinda Barreras

DLMHS 2024 tassels

DLMHS 2024 Principal Clark gift

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