2023 AVID graduation: Armed with opportunity, graduates end their AVID journeys


On Wednesday, May 24,  the AVID program, which guides first-generation students to opportunity and success, had its graduation. The day celebrated the program in which students follow one cohort, or class, throughout all four years of high school. While, for many students, receiving a high school diploma makes June 9th one of the most important days of high school, for AVID graduates, May 24 also deserves acknowledgment. 

Fit with food, tables and speakers, the graduation conjured up powerful emotions for many AVID students to whom the program represented much more than an ordinary class. 

“It provided great resources to succeed both in college and in high school, especially those who needed a bit more motivation to get through high school. I think there were great support systems that helped keep us motivated and ultimately got us to where we are now,” AVID graduate Diego Cruz said. 

The primary function of AVID is to help students with assistance to resources that may exist but are simply not as accessible to certain students for a variety of reasons. Or, they could simply not know about these opportunities. 

“When I first joined AVID, I expected to just be learning about colleges, different colleges, like California, however, it changed because I didn’t know that they also offer scholarships,” AVID graduate Gerardo Sanchez said.  This highlights one area that AVID focuses on, where AVID specifically attracts students that may historically have been ignored, giving them future opportunities.

The graduation was special for many, as it saw photo ops, celebrations, and a special door ceremony, where former students of the program walked through a “door of opportunity,” leading them onto the next phase of their life. Due to the focus of AVID, this is directed toward them entering higher education past secondary school. 

“I would say [AVID graduation is]  pretty important just because I met a lot of my friends in [the] AVID class. Also, Mr. Aguilera has been one of my favorite teachers for so long. In general, we’ve all just built a good relationship with the teachers and students of AVID,” Sanchez said. 

For students outside of AVID, it may seem like just another class, but for others, it’s a four-year-long transformative experience, which makes their graduation all the more significant.