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Morgan Hill
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December 8, 2023

Students intent on making a difference: Live Oak

Though their chosen paths will lead them in different
directions, Live Oak seniors Laura Marshall and Raimy Boban are
equally excited about what the future holds for them.
Though their chosen paths will lead them in different directions, Live Oak seniors Laura Marshall and Raimy Boban are equally excited about what the future holds for them.

“It’s going to be fun, exciting, but very different,” Valedictorian Marshall said about her acceptance to Brown University in Providence, R.I.

“I’m looking at international relations. I want to learn more languages, like Spanish and Japanese.”

Marshall already speaks French, and wants to learn Japanese particularly because her mother’s family speaks the language.

Salutatorian Boban plans to attend UC-Berkeley to study molecular biology.

“My goal is to get to med school, to become a doctor,” she said. “I really liked biology, and I think medicine is where I want to go with it.”

The more immediate future for Marshall and Boban is a procession onto the baseball diamond into rented bleachers. The graduation ceremony is not being held on Richert Field this year because the field is being re-sodded as a part of the Live Oak renovations.

The ceremony begins at 6 p.m., with the 18th annual Grad Night starting at 10 p.m. in the gym and continuing until 5 a.m.

The valedictorian and salutatorian selections are based on grade point average. Live Oak officials declined to release the students’ GPAs.

Having a large group of friends that shared most of the same classes and many activities was important to both of the students in “getting through” their high school years, they said.

“It’s really great to have been with the same group of people, to develop relationships with them that were both fun and helpful,” Boban said. “They were a positive support. It was really nice to have friends like that.”

Marshall said she also thinks the people side of the high school equation made her experience special.

“I think what has been the best part is the people, friends, and being with those friends, like for the senior prom,” she said. “That was really great. And all the great teachers here. We’ve had a chance to get to know some really good teachers, and that helps.”

In her sophomore year, Marshall said, she had a teacher that made a lot of difference in her high school career. Thomasine Stewart, a math teacher, did not stop being a mentor just because Laura wasn’t in her class anymore.

“When I was in her class, she motivated me,” Marshall said. “She would take you by the hand, if that’s what you needed, and lead you through, make sure you got it.”

Another adult that made a difference for her, Marshall said, is not one of the teachers.

“Irma (Morales, a yard duty) made high school a lot more enjoyable for me,” she said. “She’s always around, you see her on campus and she always says ‘hi.’ She knows your name. She’s your friend.”

Marshall said she would advise students entering high school who want to have a successful, fun experience to open up to the adults on campus as well as their group of friends. She also said she found that acceptance by the popular crowd is overrated.

“It’s important to find a group of people who like to do the same things you do, who have similar views,” she said. “It is so not worth it to worry about that whole popularity thing. You have to be comfortable with who you are, not who other people think you should be.”

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