Boys & Girls Village (BGV) recently honored the achievements of its graduating students at a ceremony at its Milford Campus on June 20. The celebration recognized students who will be advancing to new programs and higher grade levels, as well as students whose progress has led to them continuing their studies at schools in their communities.
There were 57 students participating in this year’s graduation along with family members and friends. Jon Oddo, BGV’s Vice President of Educational & Vocational Services, welcomed all in attendance with an opening address. Following his welcome, Willie, a student from West Haven, led the audience in the pledge of allegiance, and students from Ms. Steele’s music class performed for the audience.
“We are proud of the academic growth that our students have achieved this year,” said BGV President and CEO Dr. Steven M. Kant. “They have made great progress in strengthening their social skills, working together and becoming contributing members of our community.”
“All of the staff and faculty at Boys & Girls Village couldn’t be more proud, and we wish each of our students the very best for the future,” added Kant.
Michael E. Duane, Jr., a former resident of Boys & Girls Village, served as keynote speaker at the graduation. Michael is now a principal/partner of a Wallingford architectural firm and is completing his architectural license requirements. Michael recalled the friendships and memories made while he was at the Milford Campus, and talked about the tools that Boys & Girls Village gave him to succeed.
“Work hard and don’t ever give up,” said Duane. “You will fail. I have and that’s okay. But, don’t ever give up.”
To bring the ceremony to a close, 60 awards and special recognitions were presented to students who excelled in subject areas. Following the conclusion of the graduation ceremony, members of the staff, faculty and Board of Directors hosted and served an outdoor barbeque for students and their families.