"It's a huge accomplishment, a big turning point," graduate Anna
Lopez said after the ceremony. "I actually feel older for the first
time in my life."
Held at Stengel Field in Glendale, the ceremony was attended by
hundreds of the graduates' family members and friends.
Adele Byrnes proudly watched as her youngest son, Collin, accepted
"It's wonderful," she said. "He's grown up so much at CV."
Golden State diploma recipients, Sealbearers, Academy of Science
and Medicine graduates and the school's academic stars were
recognized during the ceremony.
Valedictorian Ryan Stoddard was also presented with a plaque by
the "CV Bot," a creation of the school's Robotics Club.
Senior addresses were given by Whitney Olson and Paul Mignano, who
reflected on the Sept. 11 tragedy.
"I suggest today, in light of those events, that this class has
been given a higher calling," Paul Mignano said.
Paul urged his fellow graduates to strive for peace on Earth by
making friends out of enemies.
He pointed to the aftermath of Sept. 11 and where Americans placed
the blame for those events.
"We didn't blame the Germans or the Japanese, which would have
been unthinkable 60 years ago." he said. "We didn't blame them
because we defeated them. We defeated them by making them our friends
and investing in their countries."
The moment everyone had been waiting for -- the conferring of
diplomas -- got the loudest cheers of the night.