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Estancia’s Eagles are ready for takeoff after graduation ceremony

Students celebrate graduating at the Estancia High School.
Students celebrate graduating at the Estancia High School’s commencement ceremony on campus in Costa Mesa on Thursday.
(Courtesy of Newport-Mesa Unified School District)

Birds of a feather flock together in Costa Mesa. On Thursday, 252 of Estancia High School’s Eagles departed the Costa Mesa campus as students for the last time.

With a bright and sunny day overlooking the graduation ceremonies all across Costa Mesa and Newport Beach on Thursday, Principal Michael Halt offered his congratulations to the 54th crop of graduates from Estancia High since the school was founded in 1965.

Students ready for graduation at Estancia High School
Students ready for graduation at Estancia High School’s commencement ceremony, on campus at the school in Costa Mesa on Thursday.
(Courtesy of Newport-Mesa Unified School District)

“What a great day to be an Eagle,” Halt said in his remarks to the sound of cheering, applause and distant airhorns from fellow students, exuberant parents and family members. “I cannot tell you how good it feels to be here together. It’s great to be in Jim Scott Stadium where all Estancia graduations should be held.”

With the pandemic waning, this year’s ceremony, allowed at least four people to attend in person for every student. Those who couldn’t attend or didn’t feel safe enough to participate onsite could watch through a livestream feed online.

The district announced in April it would hold in-person graduation events as opposed to last year’s strictly virtual commencement ceremonies, though it would limit attendance and require people to wear masks and keep their distance from each other.

Principal Michael Halt speaks at Estancia High School
Principal Michael Halt speaks at Estancia High School’s commencement ceremony on campus at the school in Costa Mesa on Thursday.
(Courtesy of Newport-Mesa Unified School District)

Halt, in his remarks Thursday, said he knew there was more to life after high school than college and expressed his pride in those who took the career technical education pathways at Estancia and those who planned to continue their educations elsewhere.

Graduating seniors Justin Marroquin and Emma Goodman offered congratulations, thoughts and goodbyes to their peers, while Valeria Zecua led the turning of tassels. Halt, in an email, thanked graduates and their families for the last four years.

Students ready to graduate at Estancia High School
Students ready to graduate at Estancia High School’s commencement ceremony on campus in Costa Mesa on Thursday.
(Courtesy of Newport-Mesa Unified School District)

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