The student news site of Daniel Pearl Magnet High School in Lake Balboa, CA

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  • June 7Grad Nite for the Class of 2024 on Wednesday, June 12
  • June 7Graduation of the Class of 2024 at 5:30 p.m. at Mulholland Middle School on Tuesday, June 11
  • June 7Senior Breakfast at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, June 11
  • June 7Last day of instruction on Tuesday, June 11
  • May 31Minimum Day on Monday, June 10
  • May 31Finals schedule is from Wednesday, June 5 - Friday, June 7

The Pearl Post

The student news site of Daniel Pearl Magnet High School in Lake Balboa, CA

The student news site of Daniel Pearl Magnet High School in Lake Balboa, CA

The Pearl Post

Caps off to Class of 2024

After four years of hard work and perseverance through battles with COVID-19 and academic challenges, the Class of 2024 graduated yesterday.

The 90-minute graduation ceremony with 51 seniors was held at Mulholland Middle School at 5:30 p.m. on June 11. Although the first year of high school was online for the seniors due to COVID-19, the now-graduates slowly transitioned from distance learning to a normal high school experience filled with field trips and plenty of school events. 

“As we’ve learned during our time at this school, we have a small school and one cramped hallway but everyone knows everyone,” said Valedictorian Alan Ruiz, who was also this year’s Print Editor-in-Chief for The Pearl Post. “And we really are a family.” 

Ruiz took the stage after the performance of “Somewhere Only We Know” by Keane, with his speech focusing on his memories and personal growth throughout high school. He will be attending the University of California, Los Angeles, majoring in data science and statistics.

Incoming Associated Student Body (ASB) President junior Genesis Cuellar-Figueroa was this year’s emcee and welcomed the graduates and audience to the ceremony. Following the welcome speech, this year’s ASB President senior Maggie Simonyan led the Pledge of Allegiance and sophomore Serena Elkins led the “Star Spangled Banner.” Throughout the ceremony, there were performances from the music department students with all of the songs having the common theme of growing up and moving on. 

Salutatorian Maggie Simonyan gave her speech after the performance of “All Star” by Smash Mouth, where she delivered a speech about her journey of perseverance throughout her high school years and gave an inspiring message to the graduating class. Simonyan will be attending Stanford University and double majoring in international relations and economics.  

“May our lives be stories worth telling, paintings worth admiring, and love letters to the world that we are about to change,” said Simonyan, who was also this year’s sports editor for The Pearl Post. “Let us be remembered not as those who waited for prophecies but as those who dared to dream and achieve the impossible.” 

Fox 11 News Digital Producer Alexi Chidbachian-Bonilla was the keynote speaker for this ceremony and delivered a speech to highlight the importance of journalism and the impact it has. She also spoke words of encouragement to the graduates as they pursue their dreams and embark on new adventures. 

“As you leave high school and embark on this new and wonderful journey, don’t forget where you came from and what made you the person you are today,” said Chidbachian-Bonilla, a 2012 alumni of Daniel Pearl Magnet High School and former Prestige Yearbook editor-in-chief. “Don’t forget your friends here, your teachers here and what you’ve learned here. Spread your wisdom and knowledge to all that you meet.” 

Ending the ceremony after the performance of “Free Bird” by Lynyrd Skynyrd, Principal Armen Petrossian delivered the closing speech where he expressed his pride and joy to all of the graduating seniors. 

“You’ve achieved much and I’m once again proud, yet it’s not the reason why this graduating class holds a special place in my heart,” Petrossian said. “Class of 2024, you are a unique group of individuals because you are the kindest and most supportive students I’ve had the pleasure of knowing.” 

Photos of the graduates receiving their diplomas are available on The Pearl Post’s Flickr. For those who couldn’t attend the ceremony, The Pearl Net News live-streamed the event and it can be seen on YouTube

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About the Contributors
Jenny Marquez
Jenny Marquez, Social Media Editor
Jenny Marquez is this year’s Social Media Editor for The Pearl Post. This is her first year on staff and she’s beyond thrilled to see what awaits her this year. At school, she serves as the Secretary of the Class of 2026. She hopes to improve her journalism skills such as writing and photography this year. She loves listening to music and hanging out with her friends.
Kristin Intal
Kristin Intal, Visual Editor
Kristin Intal is a junior and in her first year on staff. As the Visual Editor, she plans to contribute by expanding her knowledge of both journalism and the students of the school. Outside of classes, she can be found volunteering or exploring different hobbies, such as digital art and martial arts.
Aidan Lia
Aidan Lia, Staff Writer
Aidan Lia is a junior in his first year as a staff writer for The Pearl Post. While in school, he plans to join multiple clubs and really enjoy school life at Daniel Pearl Magnet High School. When not in school, he enjoys meeting up with friends and playing video games. 
Andre Arcilla
Andre Arcilla, Digital Media Editor
Junior Andre Arcilla is entering his first year on staff as the Digital Media Editor of The Pearl Post. Arcilla enjoys drawing art and editing videos. His goal this school year is to lessen his procrastination and to wear better outfits.
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