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The national high school graduate rate has hit a record high at 81.4 percent, but a number of students and communities must be reached to continue that growth. Today’s global economy demands a more educated workforce, requiring more students to graduate from high school prepared for post-secondary education and career.Public media is helping local communities keep more students on the path to a high school diploma, college & successful careers.WSKG is a proud community hub station of American Graduate: Let’s Make It Happen! Check back often for local Education news reports, media produced by teens from our area, and opportunities to get involved!

Teen Thanks a Whole Team of Champions

Champions go by many titles: teacher, coach, neighbor, friend, boss, classmate, or parent… Just to name a few! As part of WSKG’s program on graduation, we asked students to tell us about the person, place, or program that helps them find successful in school. 

Autumn Roach doesn't have a champion. She has a whole team of supporters helping her toward graduation!

Autumn Roach is working toward her high school diploma from EverTech Academy at Broome Tioga BOCES in Binghamton, NY. She is studying Health Science in the Center for Career & Technical Excellence. Autumn plans to attend college after graduation.

 Submitted by Autumn Roach:Words cannot describe how lucky I am to have the support I do. I have struggled through my teenage years, not only with school but with family issues too. My years growing up were not easy.Mom, I cannot thank you enough for all the help and support you have given me, and continue to give. You push me, motivate me to do my best in school and in sports, and always expect me to work hard. You deal with my attitude and my bad days. One way or another, you manage to put a smile on my face and keep it there. I am so happy to see you happy with Gary.Gary, it takes a lot to come into a teenager’s life and support her, especially with the past that I’ve had. I know I can be a handful and difficult to live with, but the things you do for my mom and I means the world to me, more than you think. It’s such a great feeling to finally have a father figure in my life. My grandma would have loved you…Grandma, although you are no longer here physically, you will always hold a big place in my heart. You motivate me to keep pushing through school and be the best I can be. You are my guardian angel.U.E. Tigers bowling team, I love you guys like you’re my own family. You push me through even the darkest days. Words cannot express how much I am going to miss you all after graduation. Thank you!My champion is my family. 


Sharing Student Voices

Autumn's reflection and poster were selected submissions from  Who’s Your Champion? community callout. Their stories are part of a collection of student reflections celebrating the individuals who provide endless help, support, and encouragement along the challenging path to high school graduation.Thank you for sharing your story, Autumn, and honoring all the special champions in your life. How wonderful to have so many supporters cheering you on each day! We wish you continued success in college. 


More Champion Stories

Learn about the individuals and programs supporting students across Upstate New York. These featured champions were nominated by community members or honored by students from EverTech Academy at Broome Tioga BOCES.  American Graduate is made possible by a grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.