San Benito grads toss caps

High achievers honored at morning ceremony

After the June 8 commencement ceremony at San Benito High School, members of the Class of 2018 will go their separate ways to pursue college, career and service goals.

This year, 657 SBHS graduates earned acceptance to nearly 150 colleges and trade schools throughout the U.S., as well as one in England, while others joined various military branches.

In total, the Class of 2018 grads received 1,032 acceptances spread over 10 University of California campuses, 21 California State University schools, 14 private colleges throughout the state, 75 out-of-state colleges and universities, 21 California community colleges and seven trade schools, according to a report by the SBHS College and Career Center and the school’s counselors.

The impressive numbers are a testament to San Benito High School’s mission statement, which calls for students to have “the greatest range of personal options upon graduation,” Vice Principal Claire Grissom said.

“We have nine three-year course CTE (Career Technical Education) pathways that lead to high-demand, high-wage jobs, as well as 21 different Advanced Placement courses offered at SBHS,” Grissom said. “There is something for every single student at every level of learning that challenges them beyond their comfort zone.”

CSU campuses were a favorite of this year’s Baler seniors: The class received 493 acceptance letters from schools in the system, with the most coming from Chico State (64), followed by CSU Monterey Bay (52), Sonoma State (45), San Jose State and Sacramento State (44 each), and Fresno State (42).

From the University of California system, Irvine (24) and Davis (23) accepted the most SBHS students, with Santa Barbara, San Diego and Santa Cruz not far behind. Baler seniors also received 10 acceptances to UCLA and four to UC Berkeley.

The list of California private schools to which the SBHS Class of 2018 was accepted includes USC, Azusa Pacific, Santa Clara, USF, St. Mary’s and University of the Pacific.

With a strong technical education pathway available to SBHS students, admittances also came from the Culinary Institute of America, the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, the International Culinary Center, Universal Technical Institute, the Institute of Business and Technology, Pacific College and the Northwest Lineman College.

The 75 out-of-state colleges and universities to which students were accepted spanned the map from coast to coast, and include prestigious schools such as Columbia, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NYU, Johns Hopkins University, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and Hofstra. One student earned acceptance to the University of East London.

“With the guidance and support from an outstanding faculty and classified support staff, SBHS students continue to set the bar high as they embark on their journey beyond high school,” Superintendent Shawn Tennenbaum said. “Our school district could not be more proud of our seniors and all they have accomplished throughout their four years. We wish them much success in their future endeavors, and wherever life takes them, they will always be Balers.”

*Look for photos and speeches from the 2018 San Benito High School commencement ceremony in next week’s Hollister Free Lance and at

San Benito High School Class of 2018

Commencement ceremony
8:30am June 8
at San Benito High School

By the numbers

  • Graduates: 657
  • College acceptances: 1,032
  • Destinations: 150+

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