Ravine Nijjar and Kayson Neduvakkattu are looking forward to graduation and beyond.
The two Manteca High seniors will lead the Class of 2021 come May 28 during an early evening drive-in commencement exercise at Crossroad Grace Community Church, which is where baccalaureate for the graduating classes is traditionally held.
Principal Frank Gonzales made the announcement of both the upcoming graduation plans and top academic students last week.
“We usually know by the end of the third-quarter grades,” he said.
Ravine Nijjar is the valedictorian. She earned that top honor with her 4.51 grade point average.
The daughter of Kirandeep and Malkit Nijjar, Ravine – her sister, Jaisleen, is a sophomore, and her older brother, Harshawn, is an MHS graduate currently attending college – has already been accepted to UCLA and UC San Diego.
“I’m still waiting to hear from Yale,” she said.
Ravine Nijjar, who plans to study Civil Engineering, has her enjoyed her days at MHS despite the COVID-19 pandemic and months of distance learning and the return to a modified classroom schedule.
She was a member of the Buffaloes girls’ tennis team along with track and field, Eco Club, CSF and National Honor Society.
Kayson Neduvakkattu, who is the class salutatorian thanks to 4.47 GPA, also made the best of the obstacles of the times.
He played all four years on the tennis team and participated in Academic Decathlon, CSF and the Robotics Club.
Neduvakkattu has plans of continuing to study robotics. He’s set on majoring in Mechanical Engineering / Controls & Robotics, having already been accepted to prestigious University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind.
His principal, Gonzales – he’s a big fan of Notre Dame football – is hoping that he joins the Fighting Irish. “I’m also waiting (for an acceptance letter) from UC San Diego,” Kayson Neduvakkattu said.
He’s the son of Sam and Kala Neduvakkattu. His younger brother, Kaven, is finishing up his freshman year at MHS.