Parents, coaches and students gathered in the Peery Center Gym at lunch on Tuesday, April 30 to watch 18 student-athletes sign letters of intent, committing themselves to participate in various collegiate sports after graduation.
Fatima Giffen, whose son, senior Kevin Giffen committed to Foothill College for football, said the experience marks a significant transition for many athletes.
“This is the first time we’ve participated in (Signing Day),” Giffen said. “I love that they acknowledge all athletes that are competing at the next level, and it’s really exciting to see these kids move on.”
Giffen said she values the outlook held by the event’s organizers — that all athletes advancing to collegiate sports, not just those admitted into highly selective universities, deserve recognition.
“It just means a lot because I love that collegiate athletes are being recognized even if they’re just starting at the junior college, which, for Kevin, is just such a great path for him,” Giffen said. “We are super excited, and he’s actually training with the team already.”
Linda Furrier, who coordinated the event with other parent volunteers who attended the event, said she regards Signing Day as especially important as it honors student strengths that are otherwise overlooked.
“It celebrates all of those kids who have worked really hard throughout their high school career — excellent athletic performers maintaining enough academic standing to continue playing their sports.”
According to senior Siena Brewster, who committed to Missouri State University for volleyball, Signing Day recognizes her years of dedication to her sport.
“When I started playing volleyball, I knew that I wanted to play in college. It’s always been my passion and playing at the Division 1 level has always been a dream.”
According to Principal Adam Paulson, who also attended the event, the graduating high school athletes have demonstrated exceptional work ethic and ability through their many years of participation in their respective sports.
“I think (Signing Day is) an acknowledgment to all the hard work that the students did in the last four years,” Paulson said. “As all of our guest speakers mentioned, (participating in high school athletics) takes an incredible amount of perseverance and hard work—in the classroom (and) on the field.”