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Albuquerque High School

Albuquerque Public Schools Graduation Class of 2019

Albuquerque High School Class of 2019

Thursday, May 16 at 6:30 p.m.
Tingley Coliseum at Expo New Mexico

"Our pasts are behind us, our lives are before us, and our memories are forever within us." —Author Unknown

Albuquerque High Graduation Transcript

AMELIA DUNN: The oldest and proudest public high school in the state of New Mexico.

(applause and cheering)

At this time, please stand for the procession of our platform guests and the class of 2019, immediately following. Pomp and circumstance will be performed by the Albuquerque High School Band and Orchestra, directed by Ms. Elsie Stott and Ms. Drew Austin.

(orchestral music)

Please remain standing as The Albuquerque High School JROTC Color Guard presents the colors and the singing of the national anthem. The national anthem will be sung by AHS Senior, Jacquelinne Olivas.

(applause and cheering)

Gentlemen, please remove your hats and please remain standing until the colors have left the floor.

♪ Oh, say can you see ♪

♪ By the dawn's early light ♪

♪ What so proudly we hailed ♪

♪ At the twilight's last gleaming ♪

♪ Whose broad stripes and bright stars ♪

♪ Through the perilous fight ♪

♪ O'er the ramparts we watched ♪

♪ Were so gallantly streaming ♪

♪ And the rocket's red glare ♪

♪ The bombs bursting in air ♪

♪ Gave proof through the night ♪

♪ That our flag was still there ♪

♪ Oh, say does that star-spangled ♪

♪ Banner yet wave ♪

♪ O'er the land of the free ♪

♪ And the home of the brave ♪

(applause and cheering)

(applause and cheering)

You may be seated. Family, friends, and guests, thank you for joining us as we celebrate and honor Albuquerque High School's class of 2019 for their graduation. It is my honor to introduce to you today our commencement platform guests. Secretary of the APS Board of Education, Ms. Yolanda Montoya Cordova.

(applause)

Member of the APS Board of Education, Ms. Barbara Petersen.

(applause)

APS Associate and Superintendent for Leadership and Learning for Zone One, Dr. Gabriella Blakey.

(applause)

Executive Director of the APS Foundation, Ms. Shannon Barnhill.

(applause)

AHS Principal, Mr. Ryan Homistek.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Assistant Principal, Mr. Herbert Stanley Jr.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Interim Assistant Principal, Ms. Carla Greene.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Assistant Principal, Ms. Anna Laura Rodriguez.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Athletic Director, Mr. Doug Dorame.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Dean of Students, Mr. Vince Baty.

(applause and cheering)

Honored Graduate, Mr. Bert Parnall.

(applause)

Honored Graduate, Dr. Marissa Chacon.

(applause and cheering)

Honored Graduate, Ms. Diandra Barnwell.

(applause)

AHS Valedictorian, Joaquin Madrid-Larrañaga.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Salutatorian, Carmen Ortega.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Student Body President, Fiona Kilgore.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Senior Class President, Yazmin Ramirez.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Honored Junior Escort, Amelia Dunn.

(applause and cheering)

AHS Honored Junior Escort, Rishi Yang.

(applause and cheering)

And I am Stephanie Dunn, the AHS Activities Director.

(applause and cheering)

I am also honored to introduce the principals of the elementary and middle schools that feed AHS. We introduce these educational leaders in recognition of the educational pipeline these students have been a part of and in and out of our communities. Representing Washington Middle School, principal Angela Rodriguez.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Jefferson Middle School, principal Monica Olmsted.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Wilson Middle School, Principal Teise Reiser.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Coronado Elementary School, Nathaniel Kuster.

(applause)

Representing Dolores Gonzales Elementary, Principal Lori Stuit.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Eugene Field Elementary School, Principal Veronica Nolan.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Lew Wallace Elementary school, Principal Anne Strangio and Intern Cassandra Franco.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Longfellow Elementary School, Principal Richard Ulibarri.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Lowell Elementary Middle School, sorry, elementary, Danielle Cavillo.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Monte Vista Elementary School, Principal Leith Page.

(applause and cheering)

Representing Montezuma Elementary School, Mark Woodard.

(applause)

Representing Zia Elementary, Alyssa Agranat.

(applause)

At this time, I have the honor today of introducing to you three distinguished Albuquerque High School alumni. These alumni know the pride, honor and tradition

that go along with the diploma you will receive today. We introduce these alumni because after high school, they went on to become productive citizens in the community. We offer them to you as role models. I am quite certain that in 10, 15, 20 years from now, some of you from the class of 2019, will be sitting on the graduation stage and will be introduced as a distinguished graduate of AHS. 

Our first distinguished graduate is a brand ambassador, social activist, wellness influencer, host, TV personality and entrepreneur. During her time at AHS, she was a cheerleader, bulldoggie, thespian, honor society member and a student senate officer. After graduation, she moved to Los Angeles to attend the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, where she earned her Associates in Fashion Design and her Bachelors in Business and Marketing. She was first introduced to the world through CBS's competition show, The Job, where she beat out thousands of applicants for a coveted job at Cosmopolitan Magazine. After winning her position at the number one women's publication, she quickly rose in the ranks during her five year tenure and specializing in special projects and events. She was a constant fixture in Cosmo magazine in both the print and digital versions, appearing in various beauty, fashion and fitness stories including landing the 2015 peel-off cover in a Dove campaign. 

In 2016, the world got to know her while she co-starred on E! Network docu-series, So Cosmo, which chronicled the personal and professional lives of her and her co-workers. After only one season of So Cosmo, premiering in 140 different countries, she became an instant influencer with over 41,000 followers on her social platforms, prompting her to create a brand of her own. I

n 2017, she made the decision to leave Cosmopolitan Magazine and capitalize on her newfound prominence, by lending her likeness and voice to various lifestyle brands and philanthropic causes. In addition, she became ambassador for non-profits with causes close to her heart such as The Power to Decide, formerly known as The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, The National Down Syndrome Society, The Anti-Defamation League and Brooklyn Youth Sports Club. 

Today, she has taken on the role of host, Director of Consumer Relations for The Model Experience, a production, media and fashion agency for aspiring models and talent. With her new role, she will split her time between New York and Los Angeles. In addition, she also travels all over the country for speaking engagements on the subject of women in business and female entrepreneurship.Next up for she will be launching a beauty brand,  a website and more television. Ladies and gentlemen, from the Class of 2008, Ms. Diandra Barnwell.

(applause and cheering)

Our second distinguished alumni, graduated in the top 20 of her class and received a four-year letter award in academics and basketball. She also participated in student Senate, BEAT, which Bulldogs Educating About Teen Issues, volleyball, and track. She was homecoming princess her senior year and received the senior superlative, Most Athletic for her graduating class. She was also the 2008-2009 Albuquerque High School Student Athlete of the Year and was on the 2008 Albuquerque Metro All-Academic Team. Her senior year, she organized Albuquerque High's first charity event at the Old Albuquerque High School, which helped increase awareness about domestic violence. 

After high school, she attended the University of New Mexico and completed her pre-pharmacy requisites. She was accepted into the University of New Mexico, College of Pharmacy program and began pharmacy school in August of 2013. In pharmacy school, she was a member of the UNM American Society of Health System Pharmacists, Student Societies Health System Pharmacy, Kappa Psi Pharmaceutical Fraternity and was the Operation Self-Care Chair where she organized health fairs at different middle and high schools and taught children the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle. She was also a pharmacy intern at Walgreens Pharmacy and Presbyterian Hospital and volunteered at the Albuquerque Opportunity Center Clinic for the Homeless where she collaborated with interdisciplinary groups of students to provide healthcare for homeless patients.

She graduated pharmacy school in May of 2017 and is currently employed as a staff pharmacist at Presbyterian Hospital. In July, she will be transitioning to a postgraduate year one residency at Memorial Medical Center in Las Cruces where she will receive more specialized training as a clinical pharmacist. After that, she hopes to become a pharmacist clinician, where she can collaborate closely with physicians to provide primary care and specialty services to New Mexico patients. Ladies and gentlemen, from the class of 2009, Dr. Marissa Chacón.

(applause and cheering)

Our third distinguished alumni grew up in Albuquerque and was the salutatorian of his class. He was co-captain of the district football champion Bulldogs. He also lettered in wrestling, swimming, diving and track. Among many others Albuquerque High teachers who influenced him and with whom he is still in contact today, are Carol Lovato and Jim Owens as well as his football coach, Tom Ryan and wrestling coach, Herbert Stanley. He earned his undergraduate degree from Rice University in 1993 with a double major in History and French. He returned to New Mexico for law school where he graduated on the Honor Roll and passed the bar in 1997. After internships at Legal Aid and the US District Court for New Mexico, he served as a Senior Trial Prosecutor until 2004. In 2005, he began his personal injury practice to help victims of negligence and crime. He now leads a law firm of 40 people, including eight lawyers, helping thousands of victims recover damages for serious injuries.

He proposed to Marta Strzyzewski, Miss New Mexico 2001, two weeks after having met. Happily, she accepted and they make their home in Albuquerque, together with their four children, one of whom attend Albuquerque High. He is or has been a member of the following community organizations among others, Rotary Club of Albuquerque, board member and president, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, board member, UNM Law Alumni, board member, Popejoy, board member, New Mexico Judo, president, Valencia County Bar, past president, New Mexico Trial Lawyers, board member. He and his law firm also sponsor trips for children through Make-A-Wish.

Ladies and gentlemen, from the Class of 1988, Mr. Bert Parnall.

(applause and cheering)

BERT PARNALL: Thank you so much (mumbles).

AMELIA DUNN: Ladies and Gentlemen, oh, congratulations distinguished alumni. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the AHS Valedictorian, Joaquin Madrid Larrañaga, who will deliver the senior farewell address to the class of 2019.

(applause and cheering)

JOAQUIN MADRID LARRAÑGUA: Congratulations class of 2019.

(applause and cheering)

What if I told you that the past twelve years of schooling was unnecessary, that everything we have learned thus far has no bearing on our future lives. Now, you might be thinking, Oh Joaquin, we know this already, we know that we aren't gonna use calculus, sorry Mr. Phillips. We're never gonna use physics again and we're never going to annotate another essay. While this might be true for some of us, all of our core curriculum does serve a purpose, to make us all educated, well-rounded people, who can hold an intelligent conversation.

But I'm not talking about that type of education. I'm talking about life skills. What if I told you that everything we need to know in life, we learned in kindergarten.

(laughter)

Author, Robert Fulghum, details the following lessons we learned in kindergarten in his book, All I Really Need To Know I Learned in Kindergarten. Number one, don't hit people because they might hit back. In today's world, it is so easy to take a jab at someone through social media, but I think most of us have figured out that insults work both ways. And as a result, I have seen you all recognize that friendships and community are more important than any prideful comment that any one person can make. In kindergarten, we learned to put things back where we found them because otherwise we may never find them again. 

Moving through high school, I almost lost myself to the person I felt like I wanted to be by trying to emulate others who I thought were popular. Each and every day, I am continually amazed by your commitment to your beliefs. Throughout our four years at Albuquerque High, there have been several organized demonstrations like the one last month to demand new legislation for climate change. This class is not afraid to stand up for what it believes in and I am truly proud of this quality.

(applause and cheering)

In kindergarten, we learned to wash our hands before we ate, I don't think I need to explain that one. We learned to clean up our own messes because that's our responsibility. Many of us had rough freshman and sophomore years academically, but even more of us were able to bounce back and finish out strong. Personal accountability and dedication is one of our strengths as a class and I am confident in our ability to be accountable for our actions. Another lesson is not to take things that aren't ours because that's theft and clearly, theft is illegal. We learned to say we're sorry when we hurt someone because that's the right thing to do.

Earlier, I talked about the destructive power of prideful and hurtful comments, but sincere apologies are the next best thing to a time machine. Never let your pride get in the way of a meaningful friendship. Flush, that's a given. Live a balanced life, learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day. Over our four years at AHS, many of us were able to balance academics with music, art, dance, sports, jobs and community service. 

As a result, our marching band, placed the highest they have ever placed at any marching band festival.

(applause and cheering)

Our award-winning drama department consistently placed at festivals and competitions across the state.

(applause and cheering)

Our boys cross country team, placed the highest they have placed in 50 years.

(applause)

And our girls cross country team, placed the highest they have ever placed.

(applause)

50 students earned the bilingual seal this year.

(applause and cheering)

And we had five National Merit Scholarship semi-finalists and one finalist.

(applause)

These records and more, are testament to the hard work and dedication that I know each and every person puts into the activities they are passionate about. 

Lastly, Fulghum reminds us that when we go out into the world, we need to watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together. One of my favorite things about Albuquerque High is our ability to stick together, our sense of community. This past year, we lost three important members of our school. But we are healing together. Community is about lending a helping hand to someone you don't know. Community is being willing to take the first step and make a difference in somebody else's life. Community is being a friendly face to those who need it. We are a community.

(applause and cheering)

Community is perhaps the most important thing that I learned in kindergarten. For most of us, kindergarten was the first time that we were thrust into a new scary environment away from our parents, but we figured it out together and created our first community. In a couple of months, many of us will be going off to college and will once again be forced to stick together and create another community. To that, I say good luck, you've got a lot of late nights ahead of you. Others of us will be joining the ranks of our military, ready to serve our country and for that, I commend you.

(applause)

Still others will be going directly to the workforce to provide for themselves, their families and their communities. I applaud your leap into adulthood.

(applause)

No matter what you end up doing, I encourage you to keep the sense of community that we have fostered and to bring it with you into the world as you begin a new chapter in your life. Remember, community is not something that you accidentally happen upon, it is carefully crafted by the selfless actions of people just like you.

Thank you.

(applause and cheering)

AMELIA DUNN: Thank you Joaquin. The AHS Concert Choir is a 30 voice advanced ensemble under the direction of Elena Maietta, AHS class of 2005. To honor graduating Seniors, the Concert Choir will be singing, We're All In This Together, from High School Musical written by Matthew Gerrard and Robbie Neville, with arrangement by Alan Billingsley and Elena Maietta.

♪ Double L-D O-G-S ♪

♪ B-U, double L-D O-G-S ♪

♪ Together, together, together everyone ♪

♪ Together, together ♪

♪ Come on let's have some fun ♪

♪ Together, to care for ♪

♪ Each other every time ♪

♪ Together, together ♪

♪ Come on let's sing this time ♪

♪ Here and now it's time for celebration ♪

♪ Finally figured it out ♪

♪ Yeah yeah ♪

♪ That all our dreams have no limitations ♪

♪ That's what it's all about ♪

♪ Everyone is special in their own way ♪

♪ We make each other strong ♪

♪ We make each other strong ♪

♪ We're not the same ♪

♪ We're different in a good way ♪

♪ Together's where we belong. ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ Once we know that we are ♪

♪ We're all stars and we see that ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ And it shows ♪

♪ when we stand ♪

♪ Hand in hand ♪

♪ Make our dreams come true ♪

♪ Together, together, together everyone ♪

♪ Together, together, ♪

♪ Come on let's have some fun ♪

♪ Together, we're there for each other every time ♪

♪ Together, together ♪

♪ Come on let's do this right ♪

♪ We're all here and speaking out with one voice ♪

♪ We're gonna rock the house ♪

♪ Say yeah ♪

♪ The party's on now everybody make some noise ♪

♪ Come on scream and shout ♪

♪ We've arrived, woo ♪

♪ Because we've stuck together ♪

♪ Champions one and all ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ Once we know ♪

♪ That we are ♪

♪ We're all stars ♪

♪ And we see that ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ And it shows ♪

♪ When we stand ♪

♪ Hand in hand ♪

♪ Make our dreams come ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ When we reach ♪

♪ We can fly ♪

♪ Know inside ♪

♪ We can make it ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ Once we see ♪

♪ There's a chance ♪

♪ That we have ♪

♪ And we take it ♪

♪ Bulldogs everywhere ♪

♪ Wave your hands up in the air ♪

♪ Bulldogs everywhere ♪

♪ Everybody sing now ♪

♪ Bulldogs everywhere ♪

♪ Wave your hands up in the air ♪

♪ B-U-L-L-D-O-G ♪

♪ Bulldog city ♪

(singing in foreign language)

♪ We are in this together ♪

♪ Once we know ♪

♪ That we are ♪

♪ We're all stars ♪

♪ And we see that ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ And it shows ♪

♪ When we stand ♪

♪ Hand in hand ♪

♪ Make our dreams come ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ When we reach ♪

♪ We can fly ♪

♪ Know inside ♪

♪ We can make it ♪

♪ We're all in this together ♪

♪ Once we see ♪

♪ There's a chance ♪

♪ That we have ♪

♪ And we take it ♪

♪ Bulldogs everywhere ♪

♪ Wave your hands up in the air ♪

♪ Bulldogs on the count of three ♪

♪ One, two, three, bulldogs ♪

(Applause and cheering)

AMELIA DUNN: I now introduce to you the AHS Student Body President, Fiona Kilgore.

(applause and cheering)

FIONA KILGORE: I would like to start off by saying congratulations to the class of 2019.

(applause and cheering)

To some, it may seem like only yesterday we were walking through the halls of Albuquerque High for the first time. For others, high school may have been the longest four years of your life. Regardless of how the time passed, I am so glad that we are all here together today, getting ready to enter the next stages of our lives, whatever that may be. There are a lot of things I have enjoyedabout my time at Albuquerque High School, but what stands out to me most is the overwhelming sense of community that exists at our school. We've had some great times together, where our community has come together to celebrate our accomplishments. We have so many amazing programs at AHS, such as our Bilingual Program, that is ranked among the best in the country.

(applause and cheering)

And our Drama and Music Departments, who consistently wins awards at festivals and competitions year after year.

(applause and cheering)

However, our community and more specifically our class, has dealt with loss throughout our four years of high school. With the loss of both Isabel and Karina, we as a class... Our community came together to recognize their legacy and we as a class still remember, cherish and carry them with us wherever we go. I have always seen how people focus on the differences that tear them apart, but at Albuquerque High School, I have seen so many times, how people have looked at similarities to bring us together.

(applause)

I hope that we can take the lessons we have learned at Albuquerque High, good and bad, with us and use them to make the world a better place because I know that every person in the class of 2019 is capable of doing so. Thank you for the time we have shared together and I am so excited to see the change that all of us will inspire in the world. Without further ado, I would like to introduce the principal of Albuquerque High School, Mr. Ryan Homistek.

(applause and cheering)

I listened to Mr. Homistek's interview when he was in the process of being hired and immediately I knew that he would be a great principal if he was chosen. I was correct. Although he has only been in AHS one short year, he has become such an important part of our school community, playing with the drum line at some assemblies, participating in spirit days, supporting programs that are not normally recognized and most importantly, listening to the opinions of students because he knows and believes in our potential to make Albuquerque High a better place. It is my honor and pleasure to introduce our wonderful principal, Mr. Ryan Homistek.

(applause and cheering)

RYAN HOMISTEK: Thank you Fiona, Joaquin and our choir. This just illustrates so many great activities, one amazing school. So thank you for that. Good evening, Albuquerque High community, bulldogs, soon to be graduates and a special shout out to the best cluster in Albuquerque public schools. Thank you all for being here.

(applause and cheering)

I am so proud to be with you all, for 139th commencement of Albuquerque High School graduation. We have much to celebrate with the 344 graduating seniors.

(applause)

During my first year as principal of Albuquerque High School, this class has impressed me with creativity, pride and identity in numerous activities that make Albuquerque High stand out as one of the premier high schools in New Mexico. This class has set a tone to energize the campus and the Bulldog community. The next group of juniors will have a higher level of competition to rise above this group of seniors.

(applause)

This year's senior class produced 80 scholarships, raising eight and a half million dollars in scholarship awards.

(applause)

50 students received the Bilingual Seal, dozens of district and state scholar athletes crossed the stage, state caliber musical talent performed and this is all mixed with a group of stage performing artists that inspired and amazed us all in the spotlight. I wanna give a shout out to James Zamora, Yazmin Ramirez, Fiona Kilgore, Diana Mullen, Thomas Baca, Joaquin Madrid-Larranagam, Jessica Urban and Jessica Newman for inspiring us with the bright lights and big show of Albuquerque High Performing Arts.

(applause and cheering)

Throughout the year, the Bulldog spirit was authentically demonstrated by the leadership of the crowd with the bark of Savion Andrews and the bite of the Mighty Bulldog Marching Band.

(applause and cheering)

We were driven by athletes who starred and led this class of seniors on several teams, Ryan Romero, Liam Heath Kennedy and Alisa Meraz Fishbein were energized by the... Excuse me, so shout out to those athletes. We were energized by spirit assemblies, especially those led by the best Student Senate I have ever seen.

(applause and cheering)

And not to mention this was all anchored by the perfect picture framed by Nick Abeyta.

(applause and cheering)

These are just a few of the many bright spots within this graduating class. So seniors, I hope your year was filled with the opportunity for cohesion with the peers sitting next to you, soon to leave as Albuquerque High alumni. I imagine that you entered Albuquerque High School eager to find your passion, make some new friends and gain the expertise and experience to propel you to the next level of interest, service or education. I am sure there were barriers you all met along the way to this benchmark, some harder to take than others. But you progressed through the usual and some unique challenges of high school, through the sleepless nights, three or more AP tests in just a few days, the rigor of becoming bi-literate and bilingual or rising to become a scholar athlete, performing artist, marketing expert, servicemen or women to protect our country and all along with the excitement to set sail along your career pathway.

Many Bulldog seniors led actively to serve or empower others to stand up for your community. Although this vocation may not be employed by all, it is a skill essential that every youth needs today in every community. I want to applaud those Bulldogs who broke the silence and worked with the adults to look at social issues at school that have not been talked about or deemed important in the past. Thank you to Ronya, Fiona, Dakota and Sophia.

(applause)

As mentioned, this year, bulldog city experienced loss in the Bulldog Family. One, of who, should have been sitting here with us tonight. This reminds us we are given gifts in life, the greatest is the love of a friend and a colleague. It's easy to lose contact with those we have made in high school, but as I found out this year through several venues, both joyful and sorrowful, the alumni of Albuquerque High School and those within strengthen one another as a community, truly Bulldogs forever.

Graduates, you are now advancing to another milestone. Enjoy and celebrate this commencement. I urge you to keep your status as a high school graduate temporary by continuing to climb on to the next level of training, school, college or entrepreneurship. The path ahead may be uncertain, but it always is, no matter what news is reported or what is tweeted. Remember as you move forward to your next test, it will be uncomfortable. As you move on to what is next, you must put emphasis on what is important for your future and discern what may be in the way of this choice.

Athlete Jennifer McCallister and also author of the book, Press On, emphasizes the importance of training to face your steep course of challenge by preparing to fight forward. When a challenge produces paralysis of your pace during your race of life because it is too steep, the skill of knowing when to rely on others is crucial. Class of 2019, do not be too proud or reluctant to leave the best part of high school behind. Keep in touch with the wonderful group of adults and bulldog staff who have helped you along your way to become graduates of Albuquerque High. Reach out to each other when you need another strategy to solve a problem or when you may have the strength to run with an alumnus or peer along their challenge when it's too steep. Remember to take the advantage of going to your family, as they are your best support system. Thank them and do not forget where you started.

Class of 2019, as you press on, recognize that you can't please everyone or be accepted by all. Settle for where you are and what you aspire to be, rather than following something you are not in order to belong. Rather than live to please, keep open opportunities to serve by creating conditions to open blindness by making others think about who you are and what you represent. Dare to be different and use your differences to inspire. Anyone could lead this way no matter if they are in charge or not. Where difference is feared, remember there is an opportunity for education and knowledge to be diffused. This is a skillset that is essential in every collaborative hangout, school, business or leadership team. Also elevated skills are needed for the forthcoming workforce which you are about to join. According to World Economic Forum, computer and mathematical positions are on the rise, architecture and engineering close to follow, information, communication technology positions are now outnumbering those financial services that outgrew in last 10 years. The traditional jobs requiring lower skills such as production or manufacturing, office administrative positions are declining. This is a new challenge that will demand this class to enter the workforce with literacy not only in reading and math, but also augmented literacy through technology and digital citizenship, excuse me. The ability to collaborate remotely or at person are no longer optional, but essential for employability. Class receive this challenge and never stop sharpening your skills to compete for the position or lifestyle that you desire. You all who are standing or sitting on this stage, have an advantage that not everybody is able to have or has the privilege to endure, but you did.

Graduates, I wanna leave you with some final words of wisdom and reflection. It is recognized that all of us did not take the same road to get here today. So remember this as you continue your journey, to those who believed in you and fueled the flame that grew into accomplishment you maybe never knew you had, thank them and share with them the gold you will receive today. To those who challenged you when you were idle to run the race beyond your speed, play the piece your skills never let you play, pass the test your subconscious rehearsed fearfully in late nights, run for the leadership position you never thought you could do, remember their wisdom. To those whose precepts set you below what they felt was above average material or those who told you that you were below their curve, breathe out and smile because you showed that you controlled the outcome and you didn't.

(applause)

Bulldogs always remember, you are your greatest opponent when choosing your identity and your direction in life. Choose to identify in success. Graduates, commence and enjoy this night. You are the Bulldog class of 2019 and we are proud of you.

(applause and cheering) 

Albuquerque High Public School Board Members, this class has met all of the requirements for graduation and we now present, Bulldog class of 2019 to you.

(applause and cheering)

BOARD MEMBER BARBARA PETERSON: So, you are amazing, you truly are. And know that your community really loves you, but more than that, your community needs you. We need your energy and your creativity and your sense of justice. And together you can change the world. So on behalf of the Albuquerque Public School, Board of Education, we are delighted to accept the Albuquerque High graduating class of 2019.

(applause and cheering)

BOARD MEMBER YOLANDA MONTOYA-CORDOVA: (speaking in Spanish)

Congratulations 2019.

(applause and cheering)

AMELIA DUNN: Before we begin the distribution, accepting a memorial cap and gown for Karina Contreras, one of our beloved seniors we lost this year, is a very close family friend, Jovanna Alejandra Barrios.

(applause and cheering)

(applause and cheering)

Thank you.

ANNOUCHER: Joaquin Emilio Madrid Larrañaga.

(audience cheering)

Carmen Ortega.

Fiona Joyce Kilgore.

(audience cheering)

Yazmin L Ramirez.

(audience cheering)

Destiny Michelle Abeyta.

(audience cheering)

Nicholas Antonio Abeyta.

(audience cheering)

Julian L Adame.

(audience cheering)

Alexander Kane Adams.

Isabella M Adams.

Silvia J Aguila.

(audience cheering)

Ariel Aguirre.

Julio Ricardo Alaniz.

(audience cheering)

Jessica R Albanna.

(audience cheering)

Diana A Alcala.

Kenia V Alvarado.

(audience cheering)

Fatima J Alvarez.

(audience cheering)

Marithza Amado.

Savion C Andrews.

(audience cheering)

Mateo Aranda.

Doron J Archuleta.

(audience cheering)

Nayeli Arenivas.

(audience cheering)

Luis Adan Armendariz.

Xavier R Atencio.

(audience cheering)

Xander S Augustson.

(audience cheering)

Alex Lee Baca.

(audience cheering)

Joaquin L Baca.

Simon Patrick Baca.

(audience cheering)

Thomas Ricardo Baca.

(audience cheering)

Willie E Baca.

Mariola Lourdes Balderas.

(audience cheering)

Jade A Baldonado.

(audience cheering)

Gabriella Renee Barela.

(audience cheering)

Elijah J Barela.

(audience cheering)

Zoë J Becker.

(audience cheering)

Maria Victoria Behrend.

(audience cheering)

Daisy Belmares-Ortega.

(audience cheering)

Claire Renee Benton.

(audience cheering)

Mariah A Besse.

(audience cheering)

Abimael Bobadilla.

(audience cheering)

Carlos A Bolivar.

Sophie Brett Brister.

(audience cheering)

Mirabella T Bronk.

(audience cheering)

Dominique G Brown.

(audience cheering)

Khadijah Burke.

(audience cheering)

Ana Laura Cabral Barrera.

Edgar Campos.

(audience cheering)

Carlos Carmona.

(audience cheering)

Tyler Enrique Carranza.

(audience cheering)

Christian S Carreathers.

(audience cheering)

Edgar Carrete.

(audience cheering)

Araceli Elizabeth Casas.

(audience cheering)

Lorenzo D Castaneda.

(audience cheering)

Brisa D Castillo.

(audience cheering)

Lorenzo Castillo Jr.

(audience cheering)

Tristan G Castillo.

(audience cheering)

Jessica E Celarie-Villa.

(audience cheering)

Litzy Cereceres.

(audience cheering)

Niamiah Adeliz Cervantes.

(audience cheering)

Michael A Chatterton.

(audience cheering)

Darly Jesus Chavez Peño.

(audience cheering)

Odalys Chavez.

Mary A Cherino.

Nicholas Santiago Clark.

(audience cheering)

Cody Justin Coffee.

Analicia Lucia Contreras.

(audience cheering)

Magaly Alexandra Contreras Jimenez.

(audience cheering)

Amanda C Cook.

Kimberly Dyanna Corona.

Savannah S Coronel.

Viviana L De Luna.

Moises Delgado.

(audience cheering)

Asael Diaz Hernandez.

(audience cheering)

Nicole G Diaz.

(audience cheering)

Jerusalem Dominguez.

(audience cheering)

Darian Christine Edwards.

(audience cheering)

Isabel Mailin Enriquez.

Uriel O Enriquez.

(audience cheering)

Wendy V Enriquez.

(audience cheering)

Matthew L Espen.

(audience cheering)

Cezar Espinoza.

(audience cheering)

Lillian Violet Estes.

(audience cheering)

Briana A Flores.

(audience cheering)

Danielle Victoria Flores.

Sofia M Gabaldón.

(applause)

Jude Jonah Gable.

Alicia Marie Gallegos.

(audience cheering)

Amethyst L Gallegos.

(audience cheering)

Gabriella A Gallegos.

(audience cheering)

Maryah E Gallegos.

Michael Anthony Gallegos.

Abel R Garcia.

(audience cheering)

Isaac Marcos Garcia.

Rene E Garcia.

(audience cheering)

Sage Isabella Garcia.

(audience cheering)

Trinity G Garcia.

(audience cheering)

Kevin Alan Garcia Moreno.

Nathan R German.

Gabriel Patrick Gomez.

Jandy D Gomez.

(audience cheering)

Nathaniel G Gomez-Valenzuela.

(audience cheering)

Melyssa Gonzales King.

(audience cheering)

Alonso Gonzalez.

(audience cheering)

Geovanni M Gonzalez.

(audience cheering)

Acacia K Good.

(audience cheering)

Natalia Glover.

(audience cheering)

Stephanie N Graham.

(applause)

Arjenis Manuel Grajeda.

(audience cheering)

Mariah E Gray.

(audience cheering)

Andella Elena Griego.

(applause and cheering)

Ariel Jazzmyne Griego.

(audience cheering)

Jeremiah M Griego.

Daniel Guajardo.

Issak Guerrero-Acosta.

(audience cheering)

Emely Gurrola.

(audience cheering)

Xochitl Dayanara Gurrola.

(audience cheering)

Dominic P Gutierrez.

(audience cheering)

Alvaro I Guzman.

(audience cheering)

Henry Bovenkerk Hammel.

(audience cheering)

John Lee Hanson.

(audience cheering)

Paul A Hanson.

(applause)

Henry D Hardwick.

(audience cheering)

Sierra M Harris.

(audience cheering)

Liam A Heath-Kennedy.

(applause)

Abraham Hernandez.

(applause)

Daisy M Hernandez.

(audience cheering)

Mariah Nicole Hernandez.

(audience cheering)

Andria Renee Herrera.

Carolyna L Herrera.

(applause)

Olivia D Herrera.

Delilah J Herron.

(audience cheering)

Alejandra W Holguin.

(audience cheering)

Ozzie D Holguin.

(audience cheering)

Pierce J Holler.

(audience cheering)

Kevin Aaron Huerta.

(audience cheering)

Precious Monique Hutchinson.

(audience cheering)

Celeste A Ibarra.

(audience cheering)

Mason S Irons.

Sophia P Jaramillo.

(audience cheering)

Eduardo Jimenez Castañeda.

(audience cheering)

Gerardo Jimenez.

(applause)

Jessica Nohemi Jimenez.

(applause)

Angelica Jimenez Armenta.

(audience cheering)

Rindra N Josoa.

Isabella R Kamps.

Seth Ryan Killinger.

Jade Priddy Koll.

Rose Lynn Koll.

Sophie Leah Laborwit.

Hailey Elijah-Skye Lemon.

Joseph Weil Levy.

Daniel A Lopez.

Jasmine Lopez.

(audience cheering)

Sara R Lopez.

Victoria M Lopez.

(audience cheering)

Sebastian Lopez.

(audience cheering)

Ayanna Shea Lorenzo.

(audience cheering)

Ana Shukri Love.

(audience cheering)

Kelly Loya.

(audience cheering)

Emiliano Andres Lucero-Wasson.

Karmen N Luevano.

(audience cheering)

Aracelie Esmeralda Lugo.

Maria Del Carmen Lugo.

Dominique Lujan.

(audience cheering)

Isabel Lujan.

Evelyn Lujan Molina.

(audience cheering)

Miles Terrence Madden.

(audience cheering)

ANNOUNCER: Cristian Elias Madrid.

Hamza Manasra.

Jaquelin Anahi Marquez.

(audience cheering)

Jayden M Marquez.

(audience cheering)

Jolyn Rae Marquez.

Azalea Marie Martinez.

Dakota William Martinez.

(audience cheering)

Miguel Angel Martinez.

Monica Del Rocio Martinez.

(audience cheering)

Richard L Martinez.

David Eli Matos-Plata.

(audience cheering)

Ruth Mbala.

Garrett R McGrew-Keller.

Kenna McNeil.

(audience cheering)

Desiree P Medina.

Isamar Medina.

Kenya Medina.

Nydia Anahi Medina.

(audience cheering)

Gilberto Isac Medrano Lopez.

Jacqueline M Mejia.

Adrian H Mendez.

Cesar Mendoza.

Erik Mendoza.

Estefani A Mendoza.

(audience cheering)

Alisa Meraz-Fishbein.

(audience cheering)

Dominic J Mesgale.

Rose Xiao Messec.

Kristian J Mickey.

Abigail Riley Middleton.

Hana J Milani.

Abran Baines Miller.

Ava M Bartlett-Miller.

Analisse Mirabal.

Mary T Montoya.

Richard Montoya.

Julie Ann Mora.

Lidia Moreno.

James E Morris.

Zitlaly M Mota.

(audience cheering)

Diana Lynn Mullen.

Natasha M Murphy.

Marsaya K Namaste.

Angelina Rose Napoleone.

Antonio Jose Navarrete.

Santiago D Navarrete.

Jessica Kathleen Newman.

Nicholas A Northrup.

Jacob Anthony Olaguir.

Jacquelinne A Olivas.

(audience cheering)

Selene A Olivas.

Francisco Ortega.

Jennifer J Ortega.

Jeramiah Che Ortega.

Kevin Reydesel Ortega.

Rowan Miles Ortega.

(audience cheering)

Nemiliztli A Ortega-Trinidad.

Adriana E Pacheco.

Crystal Gabrielle Padilla.

Elijah Ray Padilla.

Jamian J Padilla.

Julian Padilla.

Vanessa Giselle Padilla.

Pablo Javier Paredes.

(audience cheering)

Alexia Jeannette Pattin.

Atticus J Pearl.

Chelsea May Peña-Lopez.

Xavier Santiago Peregrino-Lujan.

Zuany Perez Muenala.

Eva Marie Philips.

(audience cheering)

Jax F Polve.

Ziontay D Powdrell.

Carlo A Prieto.

Walker R Quale.

Brian Miguel Ramirez.

Elizabeth Randolph.

Tessa Marie Rasmussen.

Ana Elena Reyes.

(audience cheering)

Elias Horacio Reyes.

Ramiro Reyes Miramontes.

John Allen Ringer.

(audience cheering)

Lia Nicole Rivera.

ANNOUNCER: Monique Mariah Rivera.

Arturo M Rocha.

Arlette L Rodriguez.

Diego R Rodriguez.

Donovan C Rodriguez.

Saul Rodriguez.

Loan Rodriguez Ruiz.

Michelle Rodriguez-Lopez.

Exodus Q Romero.

(audience cheering)

Ryan T Romero.

(audience cheering)

Bryn L Romig.

Evelyn Romo.

Gabriela Ronquillo.

Zea Alma Rose.

Leticia A Roybal.

Johnny G Rozzi.

(audience cheering)

Anahi Gisselle Ruiz.

(audience cheering)

Anahi Ruby Ruiz.

(audience cheering)

David A Saavedra.

Isabel E Saenz.

Alexus R Saiz.

Michael H Salandre.

(audience cheering)

Esperanza C Salas.

(audience cheering)

Alexis G Salas.

Jesus R Salcido.

Shaili A Samuel.

Briana M Sanchez

Daisy Annette Sanchez.

Sebastian Sanchez.

(audience cheering)

Sofia F Sanchez.

Ameyalli Sapien.

Daniel M Sauzameda.

Kaela Renee Schuette.

Nolan A Seidler.

Devin S Serrano.

Jose M Sevilla.

Haeley Simmons.

Angel Abdiel Sital.

Jalen D Smith.

(audience cheering)

Brayan Solis.

Julian Soto.

(audience cheering)

Ronja M Steinbach.

(audience cheering)

Anthone R Stevens.

Kaitlyn Nicole Stewart.

Liam J Strader-Monaghan.

Amanda R Suazo.

Musfique M Syed.

Tianna Cruz Tapia.

(audience cheering)

Anthony Ray Thompson Jr.

Iris Mercedes Thornton Gonzalez.

Marquise Arturo Torres.

Estevan Isaiah Triana.

Max M Ulibarri.

Jessica P Urban.

Ramon A Urbina.

Diego Lorenzo Valdez.

Tayah Janae Valdivia.

(audience cheering)

Alyssa Monique Vallejos.

(audience cheering)

Yasmine Y Valles.

(audience cheering)

Dante Van Orton.

Avalon Vanis.

Kassandra Varela.

Janette A Vasquez.

Emelin Vazquez Ortega.

Antonio Vega.

(audience cheering)

Raymond A Velasquez.

Jacqueline Ventura.

Sydney C Vernon.

Celina Rose Vigil.

Eduardo Villa-Martinez.

Long C Vong.

Jade L Walker.

(audience cheering)

Chris Walton.

Nicholas David West.

Asia Mone Williams.

Noah Don Wilsey.

Alyssa M Wood.

(audience cheering)

Alexandra Monique Wylie.

Emma A Yakley.

Ana Berenice Yañez.

(audience cheering)

Jaan T Yang.

(audience cheering)

James F Zamora.

(audience cheering)

AMELIA DUNN: Ladies and Gentlemen, the Class of 2019 Senior Class President, Yazmin Ramirez.

(applause and cheering)

Class of 2019 will you please stand.

(applause and cheering)

YAZMIN RAMIREZ: First and foremost, I would like to thank God, my family and my friends. Class of 2019, congratulations. We have passed, yeah. We have passed the standards necessary to earn an AHS diploma. To signify this, please move your tassel to the left-hand side.

(applause and cheering)

Congratulations Bulldogs.

AMELIA DUNN: Thank you for coming this evening, please enjoy your evening.

(audience cheering)

(orchestral music)

Albuquerque High Class of 2019 Commencement Information

Platform Guests:

  • APS Leadership: Dr. Gabriella Blakey
  • APS Education Foundation: Shannon Barnhill
  • APS Board Members: Yolanda Montoya-Cordova, Barbara Petersen
  • Albuquerque High Administration & Staff: Ryan Homistek, Principal; Herbert Stanley, Jr., Assistant Principal; Carla Greene, Interim Assistant Principal; Anna Laura Rodriquez, Assistant Principal; Doug Dorame, Athletic Director; Vince Baty, Dean of Students
  • Honored Graduates: Bert Parnall, Marissa Chacon, Diandra Barnwell
  • Valedictorian: Joaquin Madrid-Larrañaga
  • Salutatorian: Carmen Ortega
  • Senior Class Officers: Fiona Kilgore, Student Body President; Yazmin Ramirez, Senior Class President; Amelia Dunn
  • Honored Junior Escorts: Amelia Dunn, Rishi Yang
  • APS Principals: Angela Rodriguez, Washington; Monica Olmsted, Jefferson; Teise Reiser, Wilson; Nathaniel Kuster, Coronado; Lori Stuit, Dolores Gonzales; Eder Ortiz, East San Jose; Veronica Nolan, Eugene Field; Anne Strangio and intern Cassandra Franco, Lew Wallace; Richard Ulibarri, Longfellow; Danielle Cavillo, Lowell; Leith Page, Monte Vista; Mark Woodard, Montezuma; Anna Benavidez, Reginald Chavez; Alyssa Agranat, Zia

Graduates:

2019 List of Graduates (PDF)


Class Flower: Sunflower
Class Song: "We're All in This Together" by The High School Musical cast

Commencement Program

  • Mistress of Ceremony: Stephanie Dunn, Albuquerque High Activities Director
  • Processional: "Pomp and Circumstance," Edward Elgar. Performed by the AHS Band and Orchestra
  • Presentation of Colors: Albuquerque High JROTC Color Guard
  • "National Anthem," Francis Scott Key. Performed by Jacquelinne Olivas
  • Welcome and Introductions: Stephanie Dunn, Albuquerque High Activities Director
  • Recognition of Distinguished Alumni: 
    • Marissa Chacon, Class of 2009
    • Diandra Bamwell, Class of 2008
    • Bert Parnall, Class of 1988
  • Senior Farwell Address: Joaquin Madrid Larrañaga, Valedictorian
  • “We're All in This Together,” The High School Musical cast. Performed by the AHS Choir under the direction of Elena Maletta
  • Introduction of the Principal: Fiona Kilgore, Student Body President
  • Principal's Address & Presentation of Class: Ryan Homistek, Albuquerque High Head Principal
  • Acceptance of Class: Albuquerque Public Schools School Board
  • Presentation of Graduates: Honored Junior Escorts, Amelia Dunn and Rishi Yang
  • Changing of the Tassel: Yazmin Ramirez, Senior Class President
  • Graduate Recessional: Performed by Albuquerque High School Band and Orchestra

Top Students (Listed Alphabetically)

  • Khadijah Burke
  • Lorenzo Castaneda
  • Matthew L. Espen
  • Lillian Estes
  • Henry B. Hammel
  • Sophia P. Jaramillo
  • Ana S. Love
  • Joaquin Madrid Larrañaga
  • Alisa Meraz-Fishbein
  • Kristian J. Mickey
  • Abran B. Miller
  • Ava M. Miller
  • Diana L. Mullen
  • Carmen Ortega
  • John A. Ringer
  • Bryn L. Romig
  • Shaili A. Samuel
  • Ronja M. Steinbach
  • Jessica P. Urban
  • Alyssa M. Vallejos

Special Thanks:

A special thanks to the Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education, Albuquerque High School Administration, and the honored teachers and Junior escorts listed below.

Honored Teachers:

Liz Alvarado, Randi Banach, Lisa Caldwell, Jackie Cole, Calesia Cole, Silvina Farmin, Lisa Gillett, Larry Gorum, Gary Gutierrez, Timothy Johnson, Mary Kelly, Denise Kuberry, Rafael Leckie, Mara Madueña, Oscar Maldonado-Ortiz, Amanda Manning, Bernadette Martinez, Lisa Martinez, Angel Martinez-Garlobo, Victor Ortiz, Jimmy Phillips, Valerie Santacruz, Samantha Thompson, Barbara Timm

Junior Escorts:

Ryan Abeyta, Kaia Bigej-Nunley, Mason Cannon, Amelia Dunn, Savannah Garcia, Josiah Henderson, Malcolm Kellermueller, Mercy Mummert, Alejandro Nevarez, Shaylee Nieto, Santiago Rodriguez, Emily Schoellkopf, Katherine Stratton, Rishi Yang