Bucks County Intermediate Unit Honors and Celebrates Their Class of 2021 Graduates

The Bucks County Intermediate Unit (Bucks IU) was extreme­ly proud to hon­or and cel­e­brate the 40 grad­u­ates of their Class of 2021.  This year’s grad­u­at­ing class includes spe­cial edu­ca­tion stu­dents from 10 Bucks County School Districts and the School District of Philadelphia.  Family, guardians, and friends of the grad­u­ates, along with Bucks IU staff, gath­ered for the grad­u­a­tion cer­e­mo­ny on Tuesday evening, June 8, 2021 in the audi­to­ri­um of ­William Tennent High School in Warminster, PA

The evening began with a wel­come by Dr. Lenny Greaney, Bucks IU Director of Special Education, who was fol­lowed by the first stu­dent of the evening to have a spe­cial role in the cer­e­mo­ny. Graduating senior, Mr. Connor Lafferty rep­re­sent­ing the School District of Philadelphia, was hon­ored with lead­ing the assem­bly in the Pledge of Allegiance.  Dr. Mark Hoffman, Bucks IU Executive Director, then pro­vid­ed the open­ing remarks.

Always a high­light of the evening are the stu­dent keynote speak­ers.  Both of this year’s stu­dents rep­re­sent­ed the Morrisville School District and are long time best friends from the Bucks IU Decisions Program. First to present was Mr. Daniel Sayers who start­ed by not­ing that he had low expec­ta­tions for the Bucks IU Decisions pro­gram he was to start in 3 years ago.  He went on to talk about how wrong he had been and about all the oppor­tu­ni­ties for work he end­ed up hav­ing through the pro­gram.  Daniel spoke about the dif­fer­ent posi­tions he held, what he learned from them, and how the pro­gram helped him enhance his life skills by learn­ing to do things like pay bills and do his tax­es.  He even took col­lege class­es part-time at Bucks County Community College. Daniel is cur­rent­ly hap­pi­ly employed, in a pay­ing posi­tion, and is grate­ful for the bright future the Decisions pro­gram was able to help him see and pre­pare for.

The sec­ond stu­dent keynote speak­er was Mr. Gavin Stricker who spoke about the dif­fi­cul­ties this past year pre­sent­ed and how he was deter­mined to not let that deter him from find­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties from which he could con­tin­ue to grow.  He encour­aged all peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties to not become too attached to only what they know or are famil­iar with, but to moti­vate them­selves to tack­le new chal­lenges and see them as a chance to learn. Gavin men­tioned all the things he’s learned in his Bucks IU pro­gram from the great jobs he’s been able to get by learn­ing how to write a resume and pre­pare for an inter­view, to under­stand­ing the impor­tance of work­place eti­quette.  Gavin end­ed by say­ing the most impor­tant thing the pro­gram pro­vid­ed him with is the knowl­edge that he is not alone as he begins his jour­ney into adult­hood and fur­ther independence.

This year’s com­mence­ment address was pro­vid­ed by Mr. John D’Angelo, President of the Bucks IU Board of School Directors.  He, along with Dr. Hoffman, pre­sent­ed each stu­dent with their grad­u­a­tion cer­tifi­cate as Mrs. Dawn Yeselavage, Bucks IU Program Coordinator, rec­og­nized and spoke about each grad­u­ate.  The evening end­ed with clos­ing remarks by Dr. Mary Agnes DeCicco, Bucks IU Special Education Supervisor. 

The Bucks IU is proud of the effort, deter­mi­na­tion, and resilience of these amaz­ing stu­dents.  They have worked incred­i­bly hard to reach this impor­tant mile­stone and grad­u­ate.  Congratulations to all our grad­u­ates with our best wish­es for a won­der­ful future!