Fresno schools honor seniors for heading to college, joining the military with 'Signing Day'

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- At Sunnyside High, Stephanie Nieto let everyone know she signed on to study biology at Fresno State.

"Not at one point did I ever give up. I always continued on," she said. "My parents obviously motivated me as much they wanted everything better for me."

Sunnyside is also sending grads to UC campuses and Brown. It's a proud moment for staffers who mirror the student body.

"Most of us are first-generation college students and that's our demographic here at Sunnyside so most of our students are having to navigate the system on their own," said counselor Jesse Medina.

Over at Fresno High, seniors moving on to college were called up one by one for a job well done.

"Sometimes it was sleepless nights doing work," said Iveth Zucilla. "Really just like preparing myself and trying to aim for those high grades that I wanted."

It's hoped this atmosphere helps inspire younger students.

"The point of this is to let all of those students coming up behind them to see that this is an option," said school board member Carol Mills. "This is something they can achieve."

Some, like Michael Trujillo, will take care of his general education classes at Fresno City before transferring.

"I want to go to Fresno State and learn more on how I can get into the body physics and learn how to get that mentality," he said.

The district sees Signing Day as a perfect way to honor students for their academic drive.

"It's super important because they spend four years of their education working hard for this moment," said counselor Chie Moua. "We need to celebrate all their efforts of putting that time in and getting those grades that are C and higher and then getting accepted."

Staffers also stressed funding for their college journey is available through scholarships and grants.
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