Green River Star -

By David Martin and Lillian Palmer
Editor and Staff Writer 

Students reach milestone with graduation


David Martin

Graduate Paulina Grant smiles as she arranges her cap outside the Green River High School Gymnasium Monday night.

Students throughout Sweetwater County put on their caps and gowns and crossed the stage, receiving their high school diplomas or college degrees.

For all of them, regardless of if it was high school or college graduation, the event marks the beginning of a new chapter in their lives.

High school graduates in Green River expressed interest in going to college, joining the armed forces, or getting a job.

"It's a happy time for them (the graduates)," GRHS Assistant Principal Dennis Freeman said.

Green River High School graduate Nick Hoskins said he plans to study music at the University of Wyoming, while his friend Jonathon Howard expressed interest in attending Western Wyoming Community College for two years, then possibly moving to North Carolina to be with family, or teaching English in Japan. Cindy Sanchez, another GRHS graduate, also said she planned to study at U.W., seeking to major in engineering. She said she plans to live in England after college.

A few members of GRHS' graduating class plan to enter the armed forces. Karen Reyes said she will enter the Air Force, seeking to become a mechanic. Kathy Rosado said she plans to serve with the National Guard for four years, but also plans to study nursing.

Expedition Academy also hosted its graduation ceremony this week. Their smaller commencement took place at Lincoln Middle School's auditorium Tuesday.

A few EA graduates, like Helen Alvarado, thanked their loved ones for helping push them to succeed.

"I owe it all to her," Alvarado said about her mother. "Since day one she's been my mom and dad. She's been my hero from day one."

During a speech to her class, Alvarado said without her mother by her side, she wouldn't be on stage with the other graduates. She said she will join the military and hopes to become a lawyer.

Other EA students have other goals aside from college or the armed forces. For Alec Bolander, saving money is the goal at the moment.

"It took a while, a lot of hard work, but I made it. I'm saving up for a house and getting a better car. I'm saving money to live in the Southern Caribbean Islands with my mom," he said.

At Western Wyoming Community College, more than 560 degrees and certificates were awarded during their Friday commencement ceremony. For some, like Hope Urrutia, her degree means a chance to make more money. Urrutia received her associates degree in office information systems and said she plans to find a job and live life in Rock Springs. Another student, C. Rosita Forman, plans on entering law enforcement. Her goal is to work her way from being a metropolitan police officer in California or Washington to eventually work in the FBI.

For other WWCC grads, their time at the college is a stepping stone to another school. Naoko Yoshida, an international student from Japan, said she plans to take acting classes in Los Angeles. Denise De Loera, a Rock Springs resident, said she also plans to continue her education, saying she plans to attend the University of Wyoming this fall to major in dentistry.

"I've always been interested in health fields," De Loera said. "I want to help people gain confidence in their smiles."


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