PA Cyber graduates 1,454 at three commencements
Jun 30, 2014
MIDLAND, PA - The Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School graduated 1,454 members of the Class of 2014, holding three commencement exercises across the commonwealth, announced CEO Dr. Michael J. Conti.
There was a third commencement site for the first time in the online school's 14-year history, said Dr. Conti. The additional site was Verizon Hall at Philadelphia's Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts.
Graduation ceremonies were held on three consecutive Saturdays: June 7 in Pittsburgh's Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall, June 14, in Philadelphia's Kimmel Center, and June 21 at The Forum in the State Capitol Complex in Harrisburg.
Dr. Conti said the addition of the Philadelphia site relieved seating pressures on the Harrisburg site and made it possible for more family members at both venues to share the high school commencement experience with their sons and daughters.
He congratulated members of the PA Cyber Class of 2014 for choosing a new kind of public school based in technology, family involvement, and independent, self-motivated study.
Speaking for her fellow graduates at the Pittsburgh graduation was Victoria Hrach of Smithton, Pa., while Taylor Natiello of East Stroudsburg was student speaker for ceremonies at Harrisburg and Philadelphia.
Victoria Hrach, whose career goal is to become an orthopedic surgeon, has been a cyber charter school student since kindergarten. She graduated having already earned 12 college credits at LaRoche College, and this fall will be a freshman at St. Vincent College.
She was a member of the PA Cyber Gifted and Talented Education program and the PA Cyber Chapter of the National Honor Society. She twice has been selected to attend the Pennsylvania Youth Education Summit and has been chosen to represent Pennsylvania this month at the National Youth Education Summit in Washington, D.C. She earned a black belt in taekwondo martial arts.
Hrach was chosen by Pennsylvania Families for Public Cyber Schools as student keynote speaker on May 6 at the annual Day on the Hill Rally in Harrisburg, where she addressed a crowd of school choice supporters outside the state Capitol on the importance of continuing to fund charter and cyber charter schools.
Taylor Natiello, a PA Cyber student for five years, was graduated with a 4.0 grade point average and 24 college credits already earned. She has been on the dean's list the past four semesters at Northampton Community College, participated in Northampton's Student Leadership Program, and this fall is to continue her education at Northampton with a major in communication studies.
Natiello is a member of the PA Cyber Chapter of the National Honor Society and received a scholarship to attend Long Island University's Summer Honors institute.
A musician, artist and dancer, Natiello earned superior ratings on violin at the Youth in Music Excellence awards program, has exhibited her paintings in museum and community shows, and has performed in theatrical and dance productions as a group member and soloist. Taylor maintains a clothing bank for the needy, and supports charities including the Garden of Giving and the March of Dimes.
The first statewide K-12 cyber charter school in Pennsylvania, PA Cybergraduated 16 seniors in its first class in 2001. PA Cyber enrolls more than 11,000 schoolchildren from all parts of the commonwealth.
Casie Colalella / email@example.com
About PA Cyber
Serving students in kindergarten through 12th grade, the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School (PA Cyber) is one of the largest, most experienced, and most successful online public schools in the nation. PA Cyber's online learning environments, personalized instructional methods, and choices of curricula connect Pennsylvania students and their families with state-certified and highly-qualified teachers, and rich academic content that is aligned to state standards. Founded in 2000, PA Cyber is headquartered in Midland (Beaver County) and maintains a network of support offices throughout the state. As a public school, PA Cyber is open for enrollment by any school-age child residing in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and does not charge tuition to students or families.