Graduates' faith turns uncertainty to opportunity

Veronica Gomez, the mother of Faith Academy's 2014 valedictorian, Hannah Gomez, talks about what it was like to see her daughter graduate from high school.

"As graduates, we face many uncertainties in both the immediate and distant future. Uncertainty is just another word for opportunity."

  • Faith Academy class of 2014 valedictorian, Hannah Nicole Gomez, said during her graduation address Sunday.

"Take advantage of this opportunity to not just make your life a success but a legacy," said Gomez, 18, of Victoria.

Gomez was one of 25 students awarded their diplomas Sunday. Nine of the students graduated with a 90 or above cumulative GPA.

High school graduation "is a big deal," said Faith Academy Superintendent Chris Royael.

Royael said he did the math on about how long students were in the classroom leading up to their graduation, and it added up to about 16,000 hours.

"If you've ever seen the movie Titanic, it's a little bit longer than that," Royael said.

Faith Academy's role in students' lives is to help them find God, he said during his introduction Sunday.

"When you know who your God is, you're going to know who you are because you are made in his image," Royael said. "No matter what field you find yourself in, you'll be able to reflect God's goodness," he said.

The Advocate asked 10 students in the 2014 graduating class of Faith Academy High School: What role will your faith play in your college education?

"My faith will be a strong guidance. My favorite verse is Hebrew 11:1. It basically says don't let nothing bring you down."

- Anissa Rodriguez, 18, of Placedo

"I will follow what God says in my heart, hang out with the right crowd and stay focused."

- Gabbie Torres, 18, of Victoria

"I think that it will really help me stay with my beliefs and not be pulled into peer pressure."

- Kassidy Korczynski, 18, of Victoria

"It will keep me on track and help me to not do anything stupid."

- Courtne Grevey, 18, of Victoria

"I believe that as much as you put in, you will get back."

- Austin Ruddick, 18, of Victoria

"I think it will help me with my communication skills and spreading the word of God."

- Craig Hogan, 18, of Victoria

"I'm attending a Christian college. The theology classes I took will help me with what I need to know for my major."

- Ethan Tijerina, 17, of Victoria

"It will be a reminder that God will always be there for me no matter what."

- Maegan Wilkinson, 18, of Victoria

"It will help me stick with the right crowd."

- RayNathan Williams, 18, of Victoria

"Because I've grown up with these values, it will be easier to take them with me as I continue my education."

- Hannah Gomez, 18, of Victoria