By Mya Castro
For the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic forced schools everywhere to transition to remote education, Riverside City College will be holding an in-person commencement ceremony celebrating graduates from 2020 through 2022.
Students gathered in the Quadrangle on May 26 for Grad Fest, hosted by Associated Students of Riverside City College (ASRCC). Students were able to pick up their free cap and gowns, receive free food, take photos with RCC President Gregory Anderson and decorate their cap.
The pandemic made many high school graduates from 2020 miss out on graduation festivities. RCC student Sofia Morgan graduated from Grove High School in 2020 and will finally experience a real graduation this year.
“My high school had a drive-through ceremony,” Morgan said. “It’s a good feeling since this will feel like my first time graduating from a school.”
Marina Morgan, a student in Architecture, Interior Design and Social Sciences will be graduating with the class of 2022 with three degrees.
“My parents never attended my graduation in high school so they will be (attending) this year along with my sisters and boyfriend,” she said.
Many students have various services at RCC to thank for helping them through the pandemic to this in-person ceremony.
Yisenia Sanchez, a Fine Arts student and mother, started at RCC in 2016. She received food from the RCC Food Pantry and was able to apply for CalFresh through the college.
“I love RCC, there’s so many resources and a community I didn’t have in Los Angeles,” Sanchez said. “This is a place I don’t want to leave but I do need to move on.”
Sanchez is thankful for the support that was given to her from not only her family and friends but the school as well.
“(RCC) is where I became an adult, this is where I saw my passions and changed my direction of schooling.”