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News Story
Updated: 05/18/2014 08:00:05AM

Edison Collegiate grads ‘seize opportunity’

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SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

Edison Collegiate High School class of 2014 graduate Shaam Prashad is surrounded Friday evening by his family, his aunt Jenny Siddiqi, niece Aish, 8, uncle Jawed Siddiqi, his sisters Suzie Prashad and Julie Prashad-Ramirez, and nephew Jayden Pariag. Shaam plans to study premed. Commencement was held at the Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center in Punta Gorda.

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

Alyssa Yankowski speaks on behalf of her classmates at the ceremony.

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

The graduates reached under their chair to find a $20 bill that they were told to spend on experiences, not “things.”

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN
René Maher and Courtney Derezil both wear a white V-stole signifying National Honor Society membership, and two cords for cum laude honors status (old gold), and Volunteer Service Award (light blue).

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

Having some laughs before the start of the Commencement are Colton Morgan and Christy James (in front), John Randall, René Maher, Nick Montoya, Chelsea Christiansen and Geoffrey Saine.

HERALD PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN
Looking forward to beginning a new chapter in their lives are Jeremiah Pierre, Jhaland Francois, Ryan Hollar, Zackary Swim and Jake Cuthbertson.

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

Jackie Guerin, who graduated magna cum laude, signs her classmate’s yearbook.

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

Lucas Rietveld and Jake Cuthbertson peek nervously out at the audience as the Charlotte Harbor Event and Conference Center in Punta Gorda begins to fill with family and friends of the graduating class of 2014 Friday evening.

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

Ashlee Libby helps Greeshma James adjust her tassel.

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

Ready and waiting to line up for commencement are Kailey Zimmerschied, Carolina Tamayo, Brynn Goldate and Tanya Sharma.

SUN PHOTO BY SUE PAQUIN

Jordan Borst clowns around while putting on his cap.

By AL HEMINGWAY

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PUNTA GORDA — Within the Edison Collegiate High School emblem is an hourglass symbolizing “seizing the opportunity.” Shaam Prashad, a member of the graduating class of 2014, is doing just that.

Shaam, 18, lost both his parents at an early age — his mother to cancer, and his father to a massive heart attack in 2011. As his father was being transported to the hospital, Shaam rode with him and watched him die.

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