As Pomp and Circumstance filled the air on June 8, Mountain View High School seniors made their first appearance in caps and gowns just after 6:30 p.m.
Family and friends stood on their tip-toes to snap photos as the graduates passed by on their way to the bleachers, their decorated graduation caps showing where they’re off to next after being a Spartan for the last four years.
“I could probably spend hours enumerating the special accomplishments of all 562 seniors on this stage,” said Principal Kip Glazer during her speech after all the graduates had found their seats. “With so many brilliant students, this class has demonstrated their academic strength. We have 46 seniors who earned 4.0 unweighted GPA, and 101 seniors with 4.5 weighted GPA.”
With the 2022-23 school year being Glazer’s first as Mountain View High's principal, she told the crowd that she was “definitely apprehensive about the unknown” when she first stepped on campus last year.
“But my apprehension disappeared almost immediately after I met our incredible students,” Glazer continued. “I find our Spartans to be kind, intelligent, creative and simply brilliant.”
Glazer praised the class of 2023 for their perseverance through the pandemic, which caused a good chunk of their high school experience to be remote.
“What makes their achievements extra special is how these students got here today,” Glazer said. “Through it all, these seniors have shown their resilience.”
Graduating senior Barbod Vaezeafshar gave the first of two student speeches during the ceremony, and is among the 46 seniors who earned a perfect 4.0 unweighted GPA.
As Bay Area students, Vaezeafshar said he and his classmates are often faced with a high-pressure academic environment and were encouraged to set lofty goals for themselves. He challenged his classmates to use that mindset to make a larger impact on the world.
“We can try out for that sports team, but what if we extended athletic access to more groups? We can send that email for an internship, but what if we also work to extend STEM access and create more representation in the field?” Vaezeafshar said. “What if our leaps of faith were done as acts of love for those around us, not as acts of self interest?”
Graduate Toki Morimoto spoke next, reminding her fellow classmates of how strong they’ve become by navigating the ups and downs of the past four years.
“When tomorrow comes, when our paths split, when we pack our things for our next chapter, we know we are ready,” Morimoto said. “Now it is time for us to go. It is time to take a leap of faith.”