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Decision Day celebrates seniors’ next steps

Godwin Heights — Music was playing as the Godwin Heights senior class entered the school gymnasium to celebrate their next steps after high school in the school’s first-ever Decision Day event.

“This is all about celebrating the students and the decisions they have made for after high school, whether that be a two- or four-year college, trade school, military, the workforce or they just want to celebrate themselves,” said counselor Krista Bonilla. 

Bonilla said the school has done smaller events in the past, but nothing to the level of hosting a Decision Day, which they now plan to do every year going forward. 

The 2024 Decision Day event was co-hosted by the Grand Rapids Community College Gear Up program and the Michigan College Access Network, and featured games, music and food trucks. Students went from station to station, picking up Godwin Heights T-shirts, filling out a senior survey and having their pictures taken with an announcement of what their next step would be after high school.

With a green and white T-shirt and blue jeans sporting a glittery MSU logo, it was not hard to figure out where senior Alyvia Bailey was headed to this fall.

Senior Alyvia Bailey proudly holds up her Decision Day sign that declares she is heading to MSU

“Michigan State University,” Alyvia said with a big smile. “I am planning on studying to be a neurosurgeon.”

Classmate Jeff Zelaya said he was celebrating himself for the day: “I am not really sure yet what I am going to do,” he said.

Senior Jose Hernandez said he picked GRCC because it is “close to my home.”

Also staying close to home is senior Alexander Albright. He plans to continue working at Menards with the goal of working his way up to becoming a general manager.

“It is really nice because they have a program and support you through the process,” Alexander said.

During the Decision Day event, students could play a variety of games

Principal Chad Conklin said that was what Decision Day was all about: to showcase the talents and decisions of the students as they move on from high school.  

Read more from Godwin Heights: 
Senior shines on the soccer field, looks toward the future
Artwork, music takes center stage at showcase

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Joanne Bailey-Boorsma
Joanne Bailey-Boorsma
Joanne Bailey-Boorsma is a reporter covering Kent ISD, Godwin Heights, Kelloggsville, Forest Hills and Comstock Park. The salutatorian for the Hartland Public Schools class of 1985, she changed her colors from blue and maize to green and white by attending Michigan State University, where she majored in journalism. Joanne moved to the Grand Rapids area in 1989, where she started her journalism career at the Advance Newspapers. She later became the editor for On-the-Town magazine, a local arts and entertainment publication. Her eldest daughter is a nurse, working in Holland, and her youngest attends Oakland University. Both are graduates from Byron Center High School. She is a volunteer for the Van Singel Fine Arts Advisory Board and the Kent District Library. In her free time, Joanne enjoys spending time with her family, checking out local theater and keeping up with all the exchange students they have hosted through the years. Read Joanne's full bio


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