BLOOMFIELD -- Eighty five, that’s the number of students from CREC School who will be going to colleges and universities across the country next year.
"I think the best feeling is feeling proud of yourself, feeling proud of working hard throughout your four years of high school, working hard to get in to colleges," said Austin Hall-Bumbray who will be attending St. John's University.
"It feels really great that after seven years at this school it is all amounting to something better than I could have imagined, and to have the support of my peers is amazing.” said Lina McCann who will be attending Roberts Wesleyan College.
It was an emotional day for the students, much like the parents and teachers who cheered them along the way.
CREC School Counselor Antonella Maccarone said "Its been a long road and to see them walk across stage, achieving the dreams they’ve had, and making it a reality, is just a success for us, and for them, I have the chills just talking about it.”
Adding to the excitement, former UConn and pro football player Andre Dixon, who delivered a speech to these graduating seniors, recounting how he felt when he was once in their shoes.
"There will always be obstacles, you’re gonna have some ups and downs but you have to get up and you have to keep fighting.” said Dixon.
A message the school hopes the student’s take with them in this next chapter of life.
"Just want to wish them well, so we thought this would be a great opportunity to let them know how much we believe in them, and we are excited to see them set the world on fire with all of their dreams and aspirations, and that they can reach higher and they can achieve those goals," said Maccarone.