April 28 marks the first ever College Signing Day at Venice to acknowledge the seniors and the colleges and universities they will attend after high school. This day was organized by Ms. Eleanor Walker, the restorative justice and teacher advisor.
“It was glorifying the efforts we put in.” said senior Isis Wyche, about the recognition of college signing day.
Toward the end of the ceremony, most of the senior class stood up in the bleachers and chanted “Keep Mr. Cerda here, Don’t give in to Weidoeft Fear!” referring to the fact that College Counselor Guy Cerda is not returning next year
The event began with the seniors meeting on the football field at 8:30 am to receive shirts that have the school logo on the front and a quote on the back: “Venice High School Gondoliers reach Higher! Over A Century Of Excellence, We’re Going to College”
The band, playing a signature Gondo song along with several cheer and dance girls, led the seniors from the field to the gym where they were met with a balloon entrance. On the walls of the gym were pages with different universities and colleges that students were accepted into.
Alexandra Radilaleh, the ASB president, led the students and adults in the Pledge of Allegiance and opened up for the welcoming speech from Ms.Walker. Next, Venice alumni Santa Monica Mayor Tony Vasquez gave a motivating speech.
“ Don’t forget where you came from,” said Vasquez, “and to follow your passion.”
After Vasquez’ speech , the seniors started the chanting and some students held up posters that said “Thank You, Cerda.” When the chanting began, Principal Oryla Wiedoeft left the gym. Mr. Cerda was not there either. He was helping students register for AP testing.
Senior Leadership students receive lanyards with a “Reach Higher!” salute. Later, the rest of the senior class received lanyards.
The ceremony ended with the administration offering vanilla and chocolate cake and water to the students, teachers, staff, and district representatives that attended.