GREENVILLE — After its first full year of classes, the West Michigan Virtual School in Greenville held its first graduation ceremony.
On Tuesday, many gathered in the Greenville High School Performing Arts Center to see students from West Michigan Virtual School walk across the stage to get their diplomas.
Although 10 students graduated, only nine walked on Tuesday.
“This graduation (is) a monumental accomplishment for our school considering that we only started in September with just 12 students,” said Center Director Dan Hodges. “Our 10 graduates represent students that were no longer in the public school system or were at risk of not graduating this year from their local public school.”
Greenville’s West Michigan Virtual School campus is now serving more than 140 students. Hodges said four more locations will be opening in Stanton, Howard City, Edmore and Escanaba.
“I knew I had to be a part of this,” Hodges told students on Tuesday.
Hodges said Dallas Bell, executive director of partner schools, was the one who made the school happen in Greenville as he had a vision and goal. According to Hodges, it was Bell’s risk taking that got West Michigan Virtual Schools where it is today. He told students they will need to take risks in the future as well.
“Risks help to turn visions into reality,” Hodges said.
On Tuesday, Bell presented students with their diplomas and told stories of each student as they came up to get it. He told the students he hopes they pass their hope on to others as the world needs more hope.
“I am so proud of you,” Bell said to the graduates.