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May 24, 2007

Oakwood Christian School graduates 30 in class of 2007

From: Anderson Independent Mail - Anderson,SC,USA - May 24, 2007

By Charmaine Smith-Miles (Contact)
Thursday, May 24, 2007

Venue: Oakwood Baptist Church auditorium in Anderson

Number of graduates: 30

Color of robes: white for women, royal blue for men

Percent of class with college acceptance: 90 percent

Graduate story: Nineteen-year-old Jack Grant walked across the stage at Oakwood Baptist Church Thursday night with a diploma and dreams of one day becoming a minister to the deaf. Mr. Grant lost his hearing as a baby and has struggled with hearing aids all his life. When he turned 14, even the hearing aids stopped helping. And after a cochlear implant and two years of home-schooling, Mr. Grant struggled through classes at Oakwood and finished with a 2.38 GPA without the help of an interpreter in class, said his mother, Sherri Grant. She said he plans to attend Harvest Bible College in Georgia and wants to minister to the deaf and possibly teach.

“At 16, he started hearing things he had never, leaves crunching and the fizzing of Coke. It opened up a whole new world to him,” Mrs. Grant said. “There were times when he got discouraged. But the teachers at Oakwood were great.”

Valedictorians: Caleb Dunn, who plans to attend Wofford College and major in pre-medicine, and Shawna Fowler, who plans to attend Anderson University and also major in pre-medicine. Both have received full scholarships for college.

The best lines from their speeches: “While together we have accomplished great things, from here on out we will be on our own. We will not be able to lean on the accomplishments of our class to hide our own shortcomings; we must step out into the world and make a difference on our own.” — Mr. Dunn

“We should give thanks to God for helping us to reach this goal, because there are so very many people in the world who have been unable to come this far.” — Ms. Fowler

© 2007 Anderson Independent Mail