Fowler High School holds college signing day

FRESNO, Calif.

With their families and mentors by their sides, 84 Fowler High School students signed their way into college.

"It means everything. If I go to college, it means I'll have a profession and I want to give back to my mom for all that she's done for me," Fowler High School senior Hugo Martinez said.

Martinez is headed to Greenville College in Illinois and says Signing Day made college feel real.

This is the second year Fowler High School has put on signing day. Nearly 60 percent of the class of 2013 have been accepted into a university or college.

"We want to make our kids feel like this is the most important day in their life. They're committing to go to college and we want to set them off on the right foot," Fowler High School Principal Hank Gutierrez said.

Yadira Barrera says it's amazing to see how far everyone has come in four years.

"It came a lot faster than I expected it to come and I'm just really excited to see what the future has in store for me and my classmates," Barrera said.

The unique tradition brings together not only students and staff, but community members like Fowler alumni and Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer.

"And taking that first step into college, for you it will be a time of anxiety and for your parents it will be an even more time of anxiety," Dyer said.

Outgoing Fresno State President Dr. John Welty told the students he was the first in his family to go to college. He says with higher education, anything is possible.

"The important thing about education is that nobody can take it away from you," Welty said.

These seniors say they're ready for the new challenge, but couldn't be where they are without the support of their community.

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