Goldsboro school makes pitch for Obama commencement

Posted April 13, 2011 4:00 a.m. EDT
Updated April 13, 2011 7:02 p.m. EDT

— A school in Goldsboro is preparing a video pitch for a national competition that could lead President Barack Obama to deliver the school's commencement address in June.

Wayne Early Middle College High School filmed the video Wednesday. The school is one of six from around the country that have been named finalists in the Race to the Top competition.

The public will have an opportunity to vote on each school's video in the coming weeks. Obama will then select a winner from among the top three and deliver the commencement later this spring.

The challenge encourages schools to show their commitment to preparing students for college and a career. Students at Wayne Early Middle College are dually enrolled in both high school and college courses.

Senior Nikea Randolph contributed her guitar skills to the video. She said her school deserves the honor because it’s so unique.

“We get to earn our associate’s degree, as well as our high school diploma, so we have a lot of opportunity here,” Randolph said.

The class graduating next month will be the first to have attended all four years of the program.

“I just think it would be a great ending and a lifetime memory for them because they’ve worked hard,” Principal Lee Johnson said.

Sophomore Stormie Holish, one of the organizers of the project, said the video is a way to say 'thank you' to her older mentors.

“It’s not like normal high school where the upperclassmen pick on the lower-classmen. They’ve really guided us,” Holish said.

Meanwhile, Johnson is trying to make plans for three possible graduation events.

“We have a Plan A for a sunny day. We have a Plan B for rain and a Plan O for Obama,” Johnson said.