By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Sierra Class of 2023 is 408 strong
sierra 2023 grad
Salutatorian Marisa Rush shares a graduation photo opportunity with her mother Amanda Rush, who is a Math teacher at Sierra High.

Marisa Rush may be the most decorated graduate of the Sierra High Class of 2023.

Principal Steve Clark referenced that while listing her many accomplishments at Thursday’s commencement ceremony at Daniel Teicheira Stadium.

All told, 408 seniors were scheduled to receive their diplomas, signifying their hard work and dedication during the past four years.

Rush, who will be going to UC Berkeley in the fall to study Chemistry – from there, she plans to enlist in the US Air Force – wrestled, played water polo, and was selected to San Joaquin County Honors Orchestra, to name a few.

She estimated that total minutes of class time – this includes the online time during the pandemic – spent while at Sierra: 259,200.

“Those minutes made us who we are today,” she said.

Time was also of the essence for valedictorian Brendan Alson, who watched the time fly by while mauling over what to say for his graduation speech.

“In the end, I did nothing,” he said.

Alson, who is UC Irvine-bound – he plans to major in Chemical Engineering – was part of the school record 4 by 800 relay team.

Clark recognized Andrew Ramirez and teacher / coach Dan Duke. Ramirez, who was represented by his family at graduation, died suddenly last October. The school present the Ramirez family with an honorary diploma and tassel in memory of their son.



Duke is retiring after 35 years in education. Of that, he spent the past 18 at SHS, where he also coached football at all three levels.

Senior Class President Nuvia Jimenez Moya remembered the spring break that occurred during her freshman year. “It turned out to be for two months,” she said.

Her sophomore year was spent distance learning. “We returned for our junior year not knowing what was normal,” Moya said.

As a whole, the graduating class finally had a senior year to remember with sporting events, rallies, and proms.

Andrea Oppliger-Delgado and Kayla Jenkins both performed during graduation, singing “Feeling Good” and “Greatest Love of All,” respectively.

Moya said, in closing: “This is the Class of 2023 signing out