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125 NAC Scholars Crush Statistics and Look Forward to College
The significance of the moment hit him when he crossed the stage at the Nicholas Academic Centers’ 8th Annual Graduation Celebration and reached out for his college sweater. Long Nguyen, a Class of 2016 NAC Scholar and Valley High School graduate, quickly realized, “I’m going to USC.” It was a moment and realization years in the making. Alongside Long, 124 fellow NAC Scholars walked across the stage in the Grand Ballroom at the Marriott Hotel in Irvine, California, to shake hands with NAC Co-Founder & Financier, Dr. Henry T. Nicholas, III, and collect their college sweaters, NAC stoles, and NAC diplomas. As in previous years, 100% of this year’s graduating class is scheduled to enroll in postsecondary education immediately after high school.
 
The ceremony centered on the graduates who celebrated in the company of their parents, younger siblings, school administrators, community leaders, and other stakeholders. 95% of the graduates are the first in their families to attend college, and their journeys to find academic success depended largely on the support of those in attendance.
 
One of the evening’s student speakers, Class of 2016 graduate Carlos Gonzalez, who will attend Cornell University with fellow NAC Scholar and student speaker Adriana Herrera, thanked his mother and fellow scholars for helping him achieve success: “I grew up with a single parent, a hard-working woman who has sacrificed herself for her children. She has not only been a good mother, but a great father, too. I am very fortunate.” Inspired to make worthwhile his mother’s sacrifice, Carlos stated, Our accomplishments have been barrier-breaking, but we need to break some more by completing our undergraduate studies and obtaining careers that will change lives.”
 
   
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