Pictured: AHS counselor Mellie Smithwick gives a few last words of encouragement to Omar Salinas before he takes the stage. MAURICIO JULIAN CUELLAR JR.

27 seniors receive their diplomas Thursday night

Mauricio Julian Cuellar Jr., Alice Echo-News Journal

It was a celebration at the Alice High School Theatre for the Performing Arts Thursday night, as 27 seniors made the transition from high school students to high school graduates.

Before the ceremony began, the graduates and their families spent a few minutes fixing their collars and situating their hats just right for the processional.

Sam Garcia felt proud of his son, Andrew Rodriguez, who was graduating from high school.

"He's worked hard to get to where he's at, we just want to get it over with," Garcia said smiling.

He said his son Andrew's motivation to succeed will help encourage his sibling to do the same.

Andrew's mom, Elaine, said a lot of the credit should go to the teachers at AHS.

"I want to thank the counselors and teachers. They worked hard with these students. They helped out a lot," Elaine said.

Andrew is pretty excited about starting college, and getting a good foundation for his future career.

"I want to go into computer graphics, you know, express my creativity, making the future," Andrew said.

"I'm glad for all my peers, and myself. We couldn't have done it without each other; we stuck together."

Following the presentation of colors by the Air Force JROTC, the graduates heard an address by AHS principal Berta Longoria. She read from Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken," and relayed the message to students that Frost was writing about life, and the roads to take in the future.

The narrator in the poem took a road less traveled, more difficult than most, and it wasn't until later on he realized he had chosen the right road for himself.

"In life one has many choices and decisions to make…all decisions have consequences. In this world, everyone has an endless number of roads and possibilities…what at first may appear to be a roadblock or setback, will take you just where you want to be," Longoria said.

"May you be proud of all that you do, and all that you become."

Following the certification of the class by Alice ISD superintendent Henry D. Herrera, the class walked across the stage one by one, to receive their diplomas from AISD board trustees Antonio Bill and Lee Ramon.

Summer graduates included Daniel Benavides, Ovidia Buentello, Jose Cadena, Sean Canales, Ruben Carranza, April Fernandez, Joshua Flores, Alfredo Garica, Janelle Garza, Clarice Guajardo, Alfred Hofstetter III, Fernando Lopez Jr., Leslie Medrano, Roxann Perez, Ponciano Ramos Jr., Edward Rendon, Javier Reyna, Darren Rhodes, Andrew Rodriguez, Esteban Salinas, Omar Salinas II, Terry Sharp, Andres Sifuentes, Elizabeth Tamez, Kristopher Villagran, Lisa Ybanez and Kayla Zamarripa.