BALDWIN PARK – Baldwin Park Unified honored the Class of 2020 – lauded for its academic achievement and resilient spirit – with socially distanced celebrations that culminated an unconventional school year.
Nearly 850 graduates from Baldwin Park, North Park Continuation and Sierra Vista High Schools were celebrated through senior recognition days, drive-thru ceremonies, social media shout-outs and virtual celebrations, ensuring seniors received a memorable send-off while adhering to public health guidelines.
“The Class of 2020 is a truly remarkable group of students, who have inspired us all with their accomplishments as they persevered through many unforeseen circumstances,” Superintendent Dr. Froilan N. Mendoza said. “We are proud to honor their success and wish the Class of 2020 all the best as they embark on new academic and professional journeys.”
Baldwin Park High School kicked off commencement activities on June 4, conferring diplomas to more than 400 students during a drive-thru celebration. Baldwin Park High’s Class of 2020 is led by valedictorian Kendra Nguyen and salutatorian Zaia Rodriguez.
Nguyen, a member of the BPHS space club and humanitarian club, earned the Ramona Burnham and College Board Opportunity scholarships for her academic excellence. She will major in physics at Pomona College, and hopes to one day work at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and win a Nobel Prize in Physics.
Rodriguez, a member of the National Honor Society (NHS), Humanitarian Club and Adelante Mujer Latina, was awarded a Baldwin Park Organization of Supervisors and Administrators (BPOSA) scholarship. She will attend Cal State Fullerton and study nursing, with goals to be a bilingual nurse anesthetist to support quality healthcare.
Sierra Vista High School valedictorian Jose Antonio Martinez and salutatorian Cindy Yan were among more than 360 Sierra Vista seniors honored with drive-thru and virtual celebrations on June 5.
Martinez’ academic achievement, maintained while playing tennis, serving in the school’s robotics club and competing in Science Olympiad, earned him national recognition as a 2020 Gates Scholarship recipient. The scholarship will cover the cost of Martinez’ studies at the California Institute of Technology.
Scholar-athlete Yan excelled in and out of the classroom, competing in volleyball and lacrosse while also serving in National Honors Society (NHS) and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) club. Yan will continue her education at UCLA in the fall.
North Park Continuation High School’s Class of 2020 featured more than 80 graduates, including Michell Aguilera and Ezdra Esparza, who received scholarships in recognition of their excellence.
Aguilera earned the Woman’s Club Scholarship and Red Cross Scholarship; Esparza was awarded a Baldwin Park Organization of Supervisors and Administrators (BPOSA) scholarship and Woman’s Club Scholarship. Esparza, who served as a BPUSD Student Board member during 2019-2020, aspires to work in immigration or criminal law or as a high school counselor.
North Park graduates concluded their high school experience with a drive-thru celebration on June 10. Clad in masks, graduation gowns and boldly decorated caps, students received their diplomas and turned their tassels as their families cheered them on from their vehicles.
BPHS_GRAD_2020: Baldwin Park High School celebrated graduates prior to the drive-thru and virtual commencement ceremonies with a Senior Sunset on May 29.
SVHS_GRAD_2020: Sierra Vista High School honored its Class of 2020 with a drive-thru celebration on June 5, affording graduates the opportunity to receive their diplomas in front of their families.
NPCHS_GRAD_2020: North Park Continuation High School followed a drive-thru commencement on June 10 with a virtual graduation ceremony, featuring more than 80 graduates.