Crispus Attucks High School celebrated its largest graduating class since it reopened as a high school in 2010 on Thursday, June 13, with 178 graduates. The commencement exercises took place at Clowes Memorial Hall on the campus of Butler University in front of a crowd of staff, family and friends.


The Class of 2019’s top student, Kenedi Cheatham, graduated summa cum laude with a 4.1 GPA. She also shared a few thoughts during the ceremony.


“Mama, you were my biggest fan, no doubt,” said Cheatham. “You kept me going when I was tired and stressed out with your dancing in the kitchen while you were cooking spaghetti, even though you know I hate spaghetti, because you cooked it so much.”


Cheatham also earned 18 college credits from IUPUI while still a student at Attucks. She plans to attend Valparaiso University and to become physician’s assistant.


Dennis Bland, president of the Center for Leadership Development, delivered the commencement address.


“The students on this stage succeeded because they did three simple things,” said Bland. “They worked and put in the grind, even if it meant studying 20 hours a day. They had the will. They had the stuff in their heads and hearts, which meant they kept on working even when they wanted to give up. Finally, they became successful because of their ways. They had choices to make and made the right ones.”


With the turning of the tassels, the Crispus Attucks High School Concert Choir led the students in a rap of the school’s alma mater. The exercises concluded with wild cheering from the crowd as the Class of 2019 officially graduated to the next chapter in their lives.