The San Francisco and Solano County Independent Living Skills Programs each hold graduation ceremonies in the spring to recognize the accomplishments of their participants who have earned their high school diploma or GED in the last 12 months. The ceremonies, which took place June 7 at San Francisco’s Parc 55 Wyndham Hotel and June 21 at the Fairfield Downtown Theater, allow ILSP participants to celebrate as a community, receiving acknowledgement from others who understand the unique challenges that they have faced on the path to completing high school.
This year more than 80 young people reached this educational milestone and were eligible to participate in ILSP graduation. Many of these graduates were participants in our ILSP First Foundation program, a structured program designed to help young people who have fallen behind or are at risk of dropping out make the strides necessary to graduate on time.
The keynote speaker at the Solano County graduation was a familiar face to many, as our former CEO Sam Cobbs took the stage to share his own story of perseverance and the lessons he has learned along the way.
With diplomas in hand, the majority of ILSP’s graduates are headed to college in the fall. To help them get ready for the next step in their academic and life journeys, staff presented participants with backpacks and gift baskets stocked with basic necessities.
“I want to thank you all for being here,” one participant’s grandmother said, speaking to First Place staff after the ceremony. “This program has been a blessing to my granddaughter.”