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Lafayette High, Early College Academy hold commencement ceremonies

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Posted at 10:03 PM, May 20, 2021

Two Lafayette Parish high schools held commencement ceremonies Thursday evening at the Cajundome to recognize their 2021 graduates.

Early College Academy (ECA) held graduation at 4 p.m., while Lafayette High's ceremony began at 7 p.m.

49 graduates received their diplomas from ECA, and 42 of those students also went home with associates degrees. ECA partners with South Louisiana Community College to blend high school and college work, allowing students to earn both an associate's degree and a high school diploma. The graduates will be attending 14 different universities.

One graduate told KATC there are so many mixed emotions that come with graduating amid a pandemic.

"I think that we're all excited and nervous," said Valedictorian Samantha Marx. "Things that a graduation should be!"

Lafayette High School graduated almost 400 seniors in its ceremony Thursday, with 7 National Merit Scholar semi-finalists, the most in the Acadiana area.

LPSS superintendent Irma Trosclair spoke during the ceremony, recognizing the graduating class on their achievements during such a difficult year. Students experienced a different kind of school year with the pandemic and severe weather, but say the reality of graduation will soon sink in.

"I still think that this whole thing feels really surreal," said Valedictorian Patrick Chu. "We didn't have any end of the year events like prom, so it just kind of snuck up on us. I think it'll kind of sink in after this whole ceremony."

If you missed these ceremonies, but would like to watch, LHS commencement can be found here and ECA's here.

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