Camarillo High celebrates graduating class

Camarillo Graduation.
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© Wendy Pierro/Acorn Newspapers
Adolfo Camarillo High School senior Cary Hernandez waves to family as he walks onto the school’s football field during the commencement ceremony. © Wendy Pierro/Acorn Newspapers

At the 53rd annual Camarillo High School commencement, it was all about the 2011 graduating class.

In addition to six class and associated student body officers, 23 honor students were spotlighted with speeches to the standing-room-only crowd.

The speakers included valedictorians, distinguished honors recipients, and some who were both.

Among them, Jason Bunk told his peers, “Success isn’t always measured by money and wealth. … It’s about enjoying your life.”

Kaylyn Connelly told her class that not all life lessons are in books and mistakes can be beneficial if you learn from them.

Jessica Karch said to cross your bridges as you come to them, and burn them if you have to. Kristipher Korzan challenged his peers to become risk-takers.

Aubrey Kaye quoted J.K. Rowling’s speech at Harvard’s 2008 graduation, “‘We do not need magic to change the world,; we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already. We have the power to imagine better.'”

Steve Kelly, 17, said, “We worked hard to make to this day. I’m going to take classes at Ventura Community College for a while and study business.”

Niki Holder, 17, is going to Wisconsin to become a dairy farmer.

“I was part of Future Farmers of America here. That’s what my cords are for,” Holder said, pointing to her dark blue and silver cords. “I love cattle. I’m going to be going to Lakeshore Technical College.”

Hayden Glenn plans to start at Ventura Community College toward his goal to become a therapist.

“Today is just unreal,” said Glenn, 17. “I never thought I’d make it here. I’m a little sad because I’m never coming back to high school again.”

Valedictorian Kaylyn Connelly, 18, said: “I’m really excited because I worked really hard to get this far. It’s a big day. I’m going to Loyola Marymount University and I’m majoring in graphic design to become an advertising mogul.”

Her father, Martin Connelly, said: “I’m very, very proud of Kaylyn. She has gotten straight A’s since kindergarten. She’s one of those kids where it doesn’t come easy. She’s really got to work at it, and it’s all paying off. She hasn’t done a lot in sports or other activities because she has dedicated everything to her studying and getting ahead.”

Monica Ramos got a lot of applause from the bleachers when her message to her classmates was simple: “Go out and have fun.”

Eighteen-year-old Hanalei Santos said, “Today is a culmination of everything we’ve worked so hard for, for these four years. I’m really excited to have my family here. I’m going to UCLA on an Air Force ROTC scholarship.”

Camarillo High School

School district: Oxnard Union High School District

Spring enrollment: 2,305

Graduates: 535

Valedictorians: Katie Jo Ash, Jason J. Bunk, Valerie Rebecca Burstein, Kaylyn Marie Connelly, Emily Ellen Galloway, Jessica Marie Karch, Aubrey Sara Kaye, Christina Sohee Kim, Tyler Scott Lythgoe, Meagan Rose Nelford, Samantha Maureen Solem and Jennifer Zhao

Principal: Glenn Lipman

Highlights: API 847, the highest in school history; recipient of the Golden Bell Award; softball team won CIF championship.

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