25 High School Students Were Given The Title and Scholarships
Submitted by Subaru of America, Inc.
By APRIL SAUL
The “Remarkable Grads” of 2022 more than lived up to the name.
In the ninth year of a program sponsored by the Camden School District and funded by Subaru of America, Inc., 25 high school students from eight public schools were given that title and awarded laptops and $1,500 scholarships on Tuesday night at Camden High.
The group was diverse — but shared tenacity, determination, and dreams.
There was Marquasha Chestnut, the Gateway to College senior who lost both of the grandmothers who had helped raise her during this school year.
“I had to finish,” said the college-bound Chestnut, “because I know they’re watching me.”
For Camden High senior Breanna Diggs, graduating meant juggling her new baby and her studies. “Now I have a daughter and I have to set an example for her,” she said. She plans to go to Camden County College to study cosmetology.
Pride Academy senior Jeremiah Wright said he lacked focus before transferring to the school in February. His grades shot up immediately, and now he plans to attend Bloomfield College and design video games to help people with Alzheimer’s and dementia. “No one,” he said, “has done this before.”
The “Remarkable Grads” program is designed to recognize “outstanding scholars who, in the face of adversity, have exhibited an unwavering commitment to their education and beyond," Camden school superintendent Katrina McCombs said in the press statement announcing the annual event.
Honoree Haki Pratt, a Creative Arts senior who is the drum major of the Camden High Marching Band, said that with two parents and an extended family that “gives me everything I need,” he hadn’t had “too many obstacles” and “no sob story.”
Pratt, who is headed for Morehouse College in the fall, has taught karate, and thought that perhaps he was being cited for his mentoring of fellow students—“uplifting others and energizing them to do positive things in life.”
Before being called up to the podium and given awards in front of their family members and educators, the students heard from city leaders. Mayor Vic Carstarphen assured the students, “As far as you continue to go, you will still have this support system.”
Keynote speaker Carmen Day, a Camden native who is now a lawyer, spoke of her personal journey from being arrested at age 16 in front of her mother to graduating from Rutgers law school early at the top of her class. In the years after her arrest, Day said, “I realized it was not what happened to me that mattered, but what I chose to become…I was somebody that society counted out.”
Corporate Responsibility Manager for Subaru of America Shira Haaz told the students, “We are so proud of you and of what you are becoming.”
And McCombs urged the graduates to use the city as a touchstone.
“Remember that we love you, care about you and that your city will always be waiting to welcome you back,” she said.
Contintue reading here.
Subaru of America, Inc. (SOA), based in Camden, New Jersey, is the United States-based distributor of Subaru brand vehicles. SOA is a subsidiary of Subaru Corporation of Japan. The company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of more than 600 retailers throughout the United States.
Subaru works to reduce waste, safeguard resources for future generations, and preserve natural spaces – making real, meaningful commitments to these goals. All Subaru products are manufactured in zero-landfill plants. Subaru is also the largest corporate donor to the National Park Foundation, providing over $55 million in support and helping protect America's over 400 national parks. Follow #SubaruLovestheEarth or visit www.subaru.com/earth.
Subaru believes all pets deserve a loving home and we are the largest corporate donor to the ASPCA®. Subaru is proud to help make the world a better place for them with over $51 million donated to national and local organizations, which has supported the adoption, rescue, transport, and health of over 420,000 animals. Follow #SubaruLovesPets or www.subaru.com/pets.
Subaru believes we all should have a chance to lead a healthy life. Through our partnership with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society® (LLS), Subaru and our retailers have supported nearly 300,000 cancer patients nationwide, making us the largest automotive donor to LLS. Follow #SubaruLovestoCare or visit www.subaru.com/care.
Subaru is dedicated to supporting those who need it the most in our communities. From donating food to Feeding America, providing essential items to homeless shelters, helping Meals on Wheels deliver meals to seniors, or supporting the American Red Cross in disaster response, Subaru believes communities get stronger when everyone is cared for. Follow #SubaruLovestoHelp or visit www.subaru.com/help.
Subaru believes that all students deserve an equal and fair opportunity at a quality education. Through our partnership with AdoptAClassroom.org, Subaru and our retailers have supported more than 470,000 students nationwide and we are proud to be their largest corporate supporter. Follow #SubaruLovesLearning or visit www.subaru.com/learning.
Since the launch of the Subaru Share the Love Event in 2008, Subaru of America and our retailers have donated more than $256 million to charity, with customers choosing between four national charities and over 2,100 hometown charities, proving there's no limit to the amount of love we can all share. Follow #ShareTheLove or visit www.subaru.com/share.
More from Subaru of America, Inc.