Saipan Community School’s graduating eighth graders joined forces to raise funds for their graduation ceremony and make it as memorable as possible despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to Amanda Dunn, SCS principal and superintendent, their eighth-grade socially-distanced graduation parade was made possible through the class’ CandyGram fundraiser that started as early as February.
The class was able to rent out Mustang convertibles for students who wanted them while others opted to decorate their family cars. “The reason for this is to make it special but also because we wanted to provide equality in the vehicles used in the parade. They were not required to use a Mustang but it was available. Each graduate chose to take this opportunity,” she said.
In compliance with social distancing measures in place, graduates walked through the SCS chapel one at a time, collected their awards and certificates, and walked back to their vehicle to prepare for the parade along Beach Road.
SCS salutatorian Jung Hyun “Olivia” Hwang led her graduating class during their drive-thru graduation last May 21. She said that, although this year’s graduation is far from traditional, it still brought so much happiness to her and her class.
“It would possibly have been a happier ending to the school year, seeing all of the students’ faces, but this graduation is still a big happiness for me. When I grow up and look back at all the great memories of my childhood, I hope that this will be a part of it. …I would like to thank all the people who have prepared this graduation for the 8th graders,” she said. “…I hope that I can adapt to high school well and meet many friends and great teachers there. I also hope that this school will last a long time and leave many students of SCS with great memories and lead them to a path of success,” she said.
The awards given out during the SCS graduation ceremony were:
• Hui Yun (Joshua) Park: Valedictorian, honors, Presidential Academic Excellence Award Gold, A Honor Roll, Uke Elite award.
• Jung Hyun (Olivia) Hwang: Salutatorian, honors, Presidential Academic Excellence Award Gold, A Honor Roll, Uke Elite award.
• Isaiah Roger Aleksenko: Honors, Presidential Academic Excellence Award Gold, A Honor Roll, Band Leadership award.
• Paul William DLG Camacho: Honors, SCS Citizenship Award, Presidential Academic Excellence Award Gold, A Honor Roll.
• Daniel Ju: Presidential Academic Achievement Award Silver, B honor Roll.
• Kevin (Tae Kyoung) Kim: Presidential Academic Excellence Award Gold, Principal’s List, perfect attendance award.
• Martin (Hui Tae) Park: SCS Loyalty award
• Jeremy Yoon: Presidential Academic Achievement Award Silver, B Honor Roll.