Celebrating the Lakota Class of 2021

Celebrating the Lakota Class of 2021
Posted on 05/25/2021
This is the image for the news article titled Celebrating the Lakota Class of 2021

As the school year came to a close, the Class of 2021 enjoyed time-honored celebrations like the Military Commitment Ceremony, Parade of Graduates, senior picnics, and of course, commencement exercises.

photos of graduates with confettiGraduation had a more traditional look and feel, returning to Xavier University’s Cintas Center this year. In order to follow social distancing protocols and allow up to four guests per graduate, each school held two ceremonies. All ceremonies were live streamed, giving even more family and friends the opportunity to share this important milestone with Lakota’s 1,280 graduates.

Lakota East held ceremonies at 5 and 8 p.m. on May 19, with Lakota West following at the same times on May 21. Students took the stage for much of the ceremonies, leading the Pledge, singing the Star-Spangled Banner, performing special songs, and sharing memories and words of encouragement with their classmates. Gratitude was a common theme, with shout-outs to parents, guardians, and other family members -- as well as educators -- for their support and guidance throughout the years.

Superintendent Matt Miller praised the graduates for their accomplishments despite the many challenges they faced. “This has been a year like no other. Over the last 14 months, you have shown perseverance. You have shown strength. You have shown determination. You have shown compassion. And WE could not be more proud of you. You can accomplish whatever you set your mind to, and do it knowing that you have an entire community back here supporting you and cheering you on.”  

East Assistant Principal and Athletic Director Rich Bryant presented salutatorian and valedictorian rings to Katherine Niewald and Chris Mages respectively, while West Principal Ben Brown awarded rings to Salutatorians William Comer and Ariana Kenny as well as Valedictorian Anitvir Taunque.

At West, graduates Jenna Scarborough and Aneesh Vyas closed out the ceremony with the turning of the tassel tradition. At East, following the words “We made it! Now, it’s time to fly!” streamers and confetti filled the air, celebrating the Class of 2021.

Photo albums of the graduation ceremonies for Lakota East  and Lakota West can be viewed on Lakota’s Facebook page. 

Statistics about the Lakota Class of 2021 include:

Graduates: 1,280 (634 East, 646 West)

Graduation rate: 98.3%

Pursuing higher education: 76.8%

Military commitments: 27

Honors diplomas: 25.8%

Scholarships: $27 million+


Congratulations and best wishes to all of Lakota’s newest alumni!