City officials congratulate 2,000 graduating seniors from local high schools who will be attending college in the fall as part of the First Lady’s Reach Higher initiative.
Philadelphia, May 1, 2015 – The City of Philadelphia hosted its first-ever College Signing Day event, congratulating 2,000 local graduating high school seniors from 60 District, charter and private schools on being admitted to college. College Signing Day celebrates college-bound high school students as part of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher initiative, which seeks to inspire and support students across the country to pursue and complete an education beyond high school.
“College Signing Day is an opportunity to recognize the accomplishments of our college-bound high school seniors by showing them educational success is just as important as athletic abilities. I am so proud to recognize the accomplishments of these bright young people who have excelled in the classroom and are committing themselves to completing a college degree,” said Mayor Nutter. “I want to wish these bright young scholars well on the next leg of their educational journey. And, I want to thank all of the partners who worked hard to make College Signing Day a huge success.”
Superintendent of the Philadelphia School District Dr. William R. Hite said, “College Signing Day is a great opportunity to showcase the importance of higher education. The School District of Philadelphia is committed to giving all students the tools they need for success in college and beyond. I encourage all Philadelphians to use this day as a celebration of college preparation, college access and ultimately, college success.”
College Signing Day was held at St. Joseph’s University’s Michael J. Hagan arena.
“On behalf of Saint Joseph’s University, I am honored to welcome to our campus the Philadelphia area high school seniors participating in the White House initiative, Reach Higher Philly College Signing Day,” says SJU president C. Kevin Gillespie, S.J. ’72. “It is inspiring that so many young people have committed the next four years of their lives to completing their college education, and I am especially pleased to welcome the future Saint Joseph’s Hawks among them who are joining us for the celebration.”
Sponsors for the event include the School District of Philadelphia, United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, College Board, Cool Speak, Philadelphia School Partnership and the College Prep Roundtable.
“At United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, we believe all children deserve the opportunity to graduate from high school college- and career-ready to position themselves for work that pays a family-sustaining wage,” said Jim Cawley, president and CEO of United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey. “We’re honored to celebrate the accomplishments of the class of 2015 and are excited to see what their futures hold.”