These Pekin students walking down the aisle are putting the last four years of fun and work behind them.
Senior Maddi Carr says, "'I'm going to miss how Pekin high has been really like a family. I've jsut grown close with so many people over the four years Ive been here."
Senior Brea Sturm says, "I think I'm going to miss just the Juniors and everybody I was friends with - the football games and the basketball games."
In front of family of friends, Four hundred and thirty students received their diploma - officially making them high school graduates.
Assistant Principal Seth Mingus says, "We have high expectations here , and these kids have met every single one of these expectations. Many of them have gone above and beyond. Graduation day is a proud day for teachers and administrators."
Senior Jake Flannigan says , "These last four years have been really awesome. All the staff make it awesome. All the teachers - they're real caring and they really care about our future.
Each teen now has a new direction in life - some are going to college, some to the military, others straight to work Although they're excited for the next step, they know change is something they'll have to get used to.
Maddi Carr says, "I think it's going to be strange that I might not see the people that I'm used to seeing every single day, kinda losing those close friends and relationships. To have to get a visitors pass to come back in is going to be really weird."
But they say they're ready for the challenge.
Brea Sturm says, "I'm just looking forward to meeting new friends and having fun."
Jake Flannigan says, "I'm really excited to meet new kids, but I'll never forget all these students that I met my last four years at Pekin,"
And those who have watched over them the last four years have some advice.
Mingus says, " Not to be scared. They're well prepared. I know they're thinking about what they're going to do for the next step. Many of them have plans, they're going on to do great things.
Pekin Community High School had 13 Valedvictorians in this years Senior class.