Everett High School’s “Celebrate a Senior” initiative was a complete success. Then, Everett Bank made it even better.
Thanks to the generosity of individual donors, plus an incredible gift from Everett Bank, EHS exceeded its target for the ambitious and unprecedented “Celebrate a Senior” project, as the district capped a successful and memorable week of festivities for the Class of 2020.
In less than two weeks, enough volunteers signed up to ensure that every senior received a gift(s) totaling $50, making the effort a total success. The endeavor then exceeded expectations on Friday, when Everett Bank President and CEO Richard O’Neill presented EHS with a $12,500 donation in the form of $25 gift cards. These will be given to the students during the district’s Drive-Through Graduation Celebration on Saturday, June 6.
“Truly, we appreciate the opportunity to do this,” said Mr. O’Neil. “I have a great Board of Directors and they didn’t hesitate in stepping up to join this effort.”
Mr. O’Neil is a fan of Dr. Seuss, his favorite quote being, “Today you are you! That is truer than true! There is no one alive that is you-er than you!” As a tribute to Dr. Seuss, the gift cards are in envelopes adorned with another Dr. Seuss favorite: “You Can Go Anywhere from Here.”
“This donation demonstrates why Everett Bank is known as one of our most selfless and loyal partners,” said Superintendent Priya Tahiliani. “But even for a company the district has come to count on, this donation is exceptionally generous.”
Everett Bank is making a habit of springtime heroics on 100 Elm Street. Last year, Everett Bank completely funded Everett High’s STEM racing team’s trip to Texas A&M University to compete in the Ten80 Education Student Racing Challenge (SRC) National Finals. Until Everett Bank stepped in, the district did not have the funds to pay for the journey to Texas.
“We had kids crying because they weren’t going to have the chance to attend this prestigious and highly visible competition,” said Vice Principal Christopher Barrett. “Then I had kids crying tears of joy when Everett Bank made the trip possible.”
Like last time, Mr. O’Neill and Everett Bank stepped forward to make sure each and every senior had a smile on their face during our Senior Week Celebration,” Mr. Barrett continued. “I’m proud to once again say that Everett Bank always puts our wonderful community first!”
The aim of “Celebrate a Senior” was simple: Have volunteers adopt a senior and present him or her with a gift worth $50. Close to 400 people, mostly EPS staff and city employees, signed up online. Elected officials and businesses joined the effort, as did EHS administrators who directly solicited volunteers. Many of those who signed up sponsored more than one student.
“The response was as heartwarming as it was impressive,” said Superintendent Tahiliani. “We had volunteers from every corner of our district and civic and business sectors. To each and every participant, I extend my sincerest thank you on behalf of the EPS.”
Superintendent Tahiliani also thanked educators and staff for their hard work during Senior Week. In addition to “Celebrate a Senior,” the week included Salute to Seniors parade and several virtual tributes honoring scholarship recipients, athletes, National Honor and Language Honor Society members, Theatre Company members, musicians, and artists. The virtual tributes are posted on the EPS website (everettpublicschools.org).