South Tahoe High graduates ‘a bonded class’ |

South Tahoe High graduates ‘a bonded class’

Roseann Keegan
Photo by Doug Smith / Special to the TribuneSouth Tahoe High School Salutatorian Kelsey Smith, left, and Valedictorian David Wise, right, deliver their commencement addresses together during Friday's graduation ceremony at the high school.

South Tahoe High School students said goodbye to their high school days during a ceremony Friday at the campus.

In all, 270 seniors were set to graduate; with four additional students pending graduation following summer school.

Valedictorian was David Wise, who received a full scholarship to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Wise plans to study either ocean engineering or bioengineering. After college, he aspires to become a researcher or work as a scientist.

He said the best part of South Tahoe High was the teachers and all his friends.

“At South Tahoe High, all the people are really cool,” Wise said.

Salutatorian was Kelsey Smith, a Gatorade National Runner who will run for UCLA this fall on a full scholarship. She plans to study microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics, and continue to medical school with the goal of becoming a pediatric surgeon.

“Having all the teachers and parents and friends supporting us and believing in us – all that support and love helped us really excel,” Smith said.

For Principal Ivone Larson, the class of 2010 has a special significance. The students were freshman when she joined South Tahoe High.

“So we entered together and we finished together,” Larson said.

“I was just reflecting on this, on what a bonded class they are,” she added. “They are just really respectful of each other and they’re very giving, kind kids.”

For the first time, the valedictorian and salutatorian shared the podium and delivered their speech together.

“They’ve both chosen to give their speech together; I haven’t seen that before,” Larson said. “They’re there to take joy in everyone’s accomplishments, not just their own.

“I would wish them the best for their futures,” she added. “They have been a great class to grow up with.”

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