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MHS Class of 2021 starts next chapter of life

A pandemic didn’t prevent the Mustang High School Class of 2021 from graduating.

The Bronco Class of 2021 throws their caps in the air, celebrating their public school milestone. There are 646 Mustang High School seniors who make up the Class of 2021. Photo / Haley Humphrey

When soaking rain arrived on graduation day, it was unsurprising that unfortunate weather wasn’t going to prevent the Broncos from finishing their public school journey. Whether they walked across the stage or not, the 646 Mustang seniors completed a milestone that district officials said they should be proud of.
MHS Principal Kathy Knowles said there has never been a more difficult year than the one graduates are departing from. She challenged the class to always react with kindness.
“We are all human beings before we are anything else,” Knowles said.
“We are more than our race, our gender. We are more than how society
chooses to define us.”

Mustang High School graduate Julien Rivera celebrates after the Class of 2021 graduation ceremony May 16. Photos / Haley Humphrey

Mustang High School graduate Tien Thai stands with her family for a photo at the Class of 2021 graduation.

Superintendent Charles Bradley also encouraged graduates to seek wisdom in circumstances.
While many students persevered, some could not have done it without their support systems, one valedictorian said.
“Being online either every day or for three days a week until spring break was exhausting and cumbersome, but we adapted to the change,” Manu Thomas said. “We pushed through all the way to graduation and that’s an achievement in itself.”
While Thomas learned many educational aspects throughout her time in Mustang Public Schools, she said she also learned how to be herself.
“I’ve learned that I should be comfortable in my own skin,” Thomas said. “The world is critical and filled with people ready to analyze your mistakes and flaws. They will never be happy with you and how you present yourself, so you might as well be you.”

Mustang High School graduates Siera Hightower and Mackenzi Garis stand together for a photo. The two walked in the ceremony May 16 at Bronco Stadium. Photo / Haley Humphrey

She also told her peers that she learned life is not a competition — everyone sets their own standard. Although the pandemic “sucked,” Senior Class President Rylan Dumoalbolt said it taught many people how to care.
“Class of 2021, let’s begin this new chapter of our lives not focused on what happened in the past year, but what we can look forward to in the future,” he said. “… Good or bad, it doesn’t matter. What we make of it will.”

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