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Roseville High Tigers celebrate graduation, school's 100th anniversary

Graduates express nerves and excitement for the future
By: Sena Christian, The Press Tribune
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Roseville High School commemorated its 100th graduating class Friday, and seniors felt the typical mixed emotions of bidding farewell to their youth.

Before the evening ceremony on the football field of Roseville's oldest campus, seniors expressed excitement for their future, and sadness over high school's end. Meanwhile, their friends and family roasted under the hot sun, waiting for the nearly 450 graduates to cross the stage.

Graduating senior Connor Ewing plans to attend Sierra College this fall, transfer to a four-year college and relocate to Los Angeles to possibly become a police officer.

"I'm pretty excited, and a little bit nervous," Ewing said. "I know what I'm doing afterward but it's going to be different. I've grown accustomed to hanging out with my friends and I'm going to miss that."

High school brought Ewing, a foster child, lots of life changes. Sophomore year, he was faced with moving to Loomis and changing schools. But his Peer Helping teacher Valerie Erb instead arranged for her colleagues to give him rides each morning to Roseville.

"That's probably the nicest thing anybody has ever done for me," Ewing said.

Junior year, teacher Lisa Vaccaro took him in to live with her family.

Graduating senior Jenthy Perez earned her diploma despite the odds stacked against her. She plans to attend California State University, Sacramento and become a veterinarian.

"Senior year, I was pregnant," she said. "I had my baby. It was hard, but I managed with everything."

During graduation, Principal Brad Basham celebrated his school's Centennial Celebration by reading a proclamation signed in May by the Roseville City Council, recognizing the milestone.

The high school district began in 1912 when 85 students attended class in the Golden Eagle Hotel. Roseville Union High School was built in 1915 and classes began in January 1916. Basham joked about the uncertainty in determining when to acknowledge the centennial.

"Do you remember the confusion your freshmen year?" he asked the seniors. "There was a lot of debate of which class would be the 100th class and celebrate the centennial."

Student Body President Jacob Priley said he was proud to be part of his school's 100th anniversary.

"Tradition is what brings people back," he told the audience. "It's what makes Roseville High School Roseville's high school."

After speeches by salutatorians Kevin Saddi and Clayton Strawn, valedictorian Aarif Masani took the stage.

"When we entered high school in 2008, we realized we had been lied to," he said.

Those medals and participation points earned in middle school no longer mattered. As students, they'd have to prove themselves all over again. Masani thanked parents, teachers and administrators for giving the students the support and motivation to reach their goals.

Sena Christian can be reachd at senac@goldcountrymedia.com. Follow her on Twitter at SenaC_RsvPT.

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Roseville High School Centennial Celebration

Roseville High School Alumni Association has planned special events and projects to celebrate the 100th anniversary:

Alumni barbecue

When: 5:30-9:30 p.m. Thursday, June 14

Where: Sierra View Country Club, 105 Alta Vista Ave., Roseville

Cost: $25. Menu includes a tri-tip/chicken buffet dinner.

Info: Reservations recommended. www.rosevillehighalumni.org.

Centennial yearbook sales

The Centennial Yearbook is available for presale price of $35 through Friday, June 15. After that date, the price is $40. Yearbooks will be mailed in early November. Online order forms are available at www.rosevillehighalumni.org.

Homecoming parade

When: Starts at 2 p.m. Friday, Sept. 14

Where: Held on Sierra Boulevard, in the vicinity of Woodbridge Park, and will end at the Roseville High School football field, 1 Tiger Way, Roseville.

Info: Open to the public

Open campus day

When: Time to be announced, Saturday, Sept. 15

Where: 1 Tiger Way, Roseville

Info: Campus tours, entertainment by student and alumni groups. Open to the public.

Community picnic

When: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 16

Where: Woodbridge Park, 415 Sierra Blvd., Roseville

Cost: Free. Bring your own food. Vendors will be onsite.

Info: Entertainment, merchandise for sale, kids activities. Open to the public.