We are excited to announce that for the 9th year in a row 100% of DSST's seniors have been accepted into four year colleges. Last week we celebrated this milestone with two celebrations, one at DSST: Green Valley Ranch and another at DSST: Stapleton, which included speeches, videos, cheers and dancing to celebrate this exciting accomplishment. (See photos here and a short video clip here) The celebrations ended with every DSST: Green Valley Ranch senior announcing their college plans, including schools both near and far. DSST's 2016 seniors will be attending MIT, New York University, CU-Boulder, Denver University, Colorado College, UC Santa Barbara, University of Southern California, University of Puget Sound, Wooster Polytechnic Institute, Drake, Morehouse College, CSU, Metro University, and CU-Denver. At DSST: Green Valley Ranch 78% of their senior class will be the first in their family to attend college.
It's important to remember that this significant milestone is a sum of the stories of individual students, from each of our last 9 years, who each have their own stories and aspirations:
This year Alexandra Flores will be the first person in her family graduate from DSST and to go to college. She loves flying planes and has had her solo flying certification since before she had a driver's license. During her time at DSST: Green Valley Ranch she started their cross country team, was on the Aspen Challenge team, and participated in volleyball and cheerleading. Next year she will be attending Wooster Polytechnic Institute. A soon-to-be DSST: Stapleton graduate, Will Keyse has been the captain of DSST: Stapleton's baseball team these past two years where he also won the Frontier League's Academics First award for his ability to perform on and off the field. He will be going to Gonzaga University and hopes to have a future in International Studies. DSST: Green Valley Ranch's Balin Carter has played on their basketball team throughout his time at the school, leading them to this year's undefeated regular season as their forward. He has also been extremely involved as a leader in the school's student senate. He will be the first person in his family to attend a four-year college and is planning to attend Morehouse College where he has been accepted to play basketball. Julia San Andres is the 3rd sibling in a row that has attended DSST: Stapleton. Last year she participated in a summer film making program in New Castle, England and hopes to become a film maker. Next year she will be head to NYU where she will major in film studies.
During the last nine years we have had the privilege of working with thousands of unique students like these. While this new 100% college-acceptance milestone is clearly a very important event for our seniors, it is, in some ways, even more important for our students who have yet to graduate. Our celebrations exist, in part, to help them see that they belong on a stage where they will be able to tell their whole community where they will be going to school and the aspirations they have for their lives. This past week has, at its core, been a celebration of our organization's deep belief in the amazing potential of each of our students to make significant contributions to the human story. We feel incredibly lucky to be a part of this team and never cease to be amazed by what we can accomplish together.