Switching tassels from the right side of their caps to the left, 46 Columbia County high school students became the latest to join the Class of 2013, Friday night.
At the Columbia County Summer School Commencement Exercise in the Evans High School gym, five county high schools were represented, each group proudly wearing their school colors. Just four students out of 50 were unable to participate in the commencement exercises.
Much like the main ceremonies in May at Harlem High School and James Brown Arena, the graduates received the same fanfare as their classmates, just in a more intimate setting.
Harlem High School’s Dylan Farmer was disappointed he couldn’t participate in his school’s graduation ceremony at Harlem. For him, Friday night was about redemption.
“I’m feeling good, happy to finally get it over with,” said Farmer. “You know you messed up but you know you always get a second chance and it’s what you do with that second chance.”
Summer school principal Jim Hooper was pleased with the way things progressed since the students began the summer session on June 3 and was proud of the students for following through and earning their high school diploma.
“It’s been a great summer,” said Hooper. “A lot of them are still just recovering from a bad freshman year, because you can only get a credit and a half in summer school. If you just totally screw up your freshman year, it takes three or four summers to make up for it.”
Lakeside’s Nick Bennett said he fooled around in his literature class in the final semester and was happy to graduate so he can start preparing for his future.
“It means a lot because I can start my career for going into law enforcement,” said Bennett, who will attend Augusta Technical College and study criminal justice.
While he still had to put in the extra time, Grovetown’s Daryl Contreras didn’t have to go to Evans High School every day.
“It took me six weeks longer, but I graduated. I’m happy,” said Contreras. “I had P.E. online so I was at home.”