COLUMBIA — “It’s a bittersweet thing,” Battle High School Principal Dr. Kim Presko said at the graduation ceremony of the school’s first four-year students at Mizzou Arena on Saturday morning.
The new graduates of Battle High School, 307 of them, proudly received their diplomas, many with outstanding achievements during their high school days.
“We’ve had them the whole time we’ve been at Battle High School. They are instrumental in creating the traditions at Battle High School as well as some of the culture that we have,” Presko said.
Mekhia Thompson, one of Battle’s graduating students, said that the programs the school offers have helped her better prepare for her future after high school.
“I’m in AVID, which is a college readiness program. That has definitely helped me with gaining knowledge that I’m going to take to college,” she said. Thompson will be attending the University of Central Missouri to major in interior design this fall.
Kham Thang, another new Battle graduate originally from Burma, has appreciated the school’s diversity. “It changed me a lot,” Thang said. “We meet a lot of people from different backgrounds.”
Thang decided to be a medical assistant, which he did not think he would do when he started high school.
“The school changed a lot of my ambitions,” he said. “At first I wanted to be a graphic designer, but I changed it to nursing. I always want to help others so it is a great way to do that.”
According to Presko, the majority of the new Battle graduates will pursue higher education at colleges or technical schools, while others will go into the military or the workforce.
“Today is a happy day. Just anxious to see about their future successes and accolades that they will get,” Presko said. “They have such bright futures ahead of them.”
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