Early Graduation at Apex High School

On January 25, 2022 Apex High said farewell to 17 Cougars as they graduated early at the mid-year ceremony. This intimate ceremony had one of the smallest number of students graduate early. While the ceremony was a small one, it involved diligent planning and preparation.

The orchestrator duties of graduation have recently been placed in the hands of Ms. Squires, Apex High’s PEAK Academy counselor. “I would call myself a party planner on the side,” Ms. Squires began. Overall, she played a significant role in preparing for the mid-year graduation. “I really organized the flow,” she said. “The biggest role for me as the graduation coordinator was making sure everyone had their caps, gowns, and stoles,” she added. Ms. Squires also works with students to make sure they all met the criteria to graduate. Not only does Ms. Squires ensure students are set for graduation, but she also reaches out to families to make sure they can attend. However, her most extensive duty is coordinating both the mid-year and end-year ceremonies.

Both the mid-year and end-of-year ceremonies take months of hard work and planning. However, there are many differences between the two. The end-of-year ceremony at the Raleigh Convention Center is significantly larger. Around 400 students plus their families gather in the Convention Center. The band and the chorus each perform at the end-of-year ceremony as well. On the other hand, the mid-year ceremony takes place here at Apex High School and Apex staff is responsible for the technical aspects of the event. “There is a lot more that has to go into it like getting a speaker, getting the sound system, etc.,” said Ms. Squires. Thankfully the small class size of mid-year graduates makes the event much easier to maneuver. “Mid-year graduation is a bit more intimate because we only had seventeen kids and about a hundred people total. I think it was about 30 minutes long. We were in, we were out and everyone can make their dinner reservations!” she continued. 

Overall, the mid-year graduation ceremony was a success thanks to the dedication of Ms. Squires and the other Apex High staff. Their next task is to plan the end-of-year graduation ceremony for Apex High Class of 2022, which will be held in June 16th, 2022 at the Raleigh Convention Center.

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