DACC students complete journey


On the morning of May 20, Delaware Area Career Center seniors celebrated their high school completion and were encouraged to keep learning after graduation.

The ceremony was held at the Rutherford B. Hayes High School’s Cornell Stadium, and unlike many graduations, DACC’s students sat with their program groups instead of alphabetically by last name. Because the DACC has students from all the high schools in Delaware County and surrounding areas, students were seen wearing either the varying colors of their home school or the teal gown of the DACC.

DACC Superintendent Jay Porada presented a heartfelt speech at the beginning of the event about how proud the DACC is of the class of 2023.

“By embracing and internalizing our mission, we hope that you have the tools to pursue your passion without fear,” Poroda said.” Whether you’re headed off to college, enlisting in the military, starting your own business, or entering the workforce, we want you to feel confident in your abilities and know you have what it takes to succeed.”

As his speech continued, Poroda stressed the DACC’s vision statement of “Empower, Prepare, Inspire, and Connect” and spent a few minutes expressing the importance of learning even after graduating.

“To be truly empowered, you must always continue learning,” Poroda said. “Education does not end when you receive your diploma or your completion certificate. There will always be new skills and knowledge for you to acquire during the course of your life.”

Poroda said that this milestone is not only the end of something but just the very beginning of what’s next for the 2023 seniors.

Following Porada, Delaware Hayes’ Aicha Tounkara took the stage for her presentation as the official class of 2023 speaker.

“Your mind shines brightest when you are among others, your heart when you encourage others, your soul when you elevate others, and your life when you empower others,” Tounkara said. “DACC has empowered me, like many, to get out of my comfort zone and reach out for my full potential.”

Tounkara explained how on her first day at DACC, she felt feelings of anxiety but also the excitement to embark on a brand new journey. She said she not only felt this for her career but also for her classmates around her.

“DACC helped me see that we can help empower ourselves and others,” said Tounkara, “Sharing a common goal with all of you has inspired me and others to work hard and achieve our goals as we’ll be able to contribute to the next generation of workers.”

As the speeches came to a close, students received their certificates of completion from their program’s instructor and posed for a photo with them.

Lauren D. Gulden is an intern at The Delaware Gazette.

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