First Graduation Press Release

By // May 31, 2017

As the entire education establishment in Holyoke is working feverishly to improve their graduation rate, LightHouse Holyoke is playing an important role, holding their first graduation on Friday, June 9. LightHouse Holyoke is a personalized middle and high school alternative just finishing their second year in downtown Holyoke.

“It’s been incredibly satisfying to join the community here in Holyoke and to work together with so many affiliate programs to create a truly innovative and inspiring option for students,” said LightHouse Co-Director, Josiah Litant. “We’re about to hold a graduation for nine students, six of whom were previously dropped out or in the process of dropping out of Holyoke Public Schools.”

LightHouse opened its doors in September 2015, with a program focused on personalized education. Each teen works collaboratively with an advisor to design a unique course of study that includes classes, individual tutorials, independent studies, internships, community volunteering, and more. This year LightHouse reached its capacity, and is currently serving 45 students from 13 different cities and towns–50{5b128d0e93d7a9f6330c62ad07a90d114acff0a757d73b21460feebca967f67c} from Holyoke–with a waiting list for the fall.

The upcoming June 9 ceremony was completely designed by members of the graduating class. All were drawn to LightHouse for the opportunity to design their own educational plans, to access one- on-one support, and to build a future based on their own passions and goals. LightHouse serves a highly diverse student body, including students who were previously disengaged along side students who were unhappy in traditional schools, but have strong academic skills and aspirations.

Graduates will be moving on to both career and college, including Hampshire College, American Musical and Dramatic Academy, and Holyoke Community College.

“We’ve been grateful for the support and developing collaboration with Holyoke Public Schools. LightHouse is pleased to be connected to the entire redesign that is happening in Holyoke,” shared Litant.

You can learn more about LightHouse at

The graduation event is not open to the public, but the press is invited. Dinner will be served from 5:00-5:45pm, during which time graduating students and families will be available for brief interviews as well. The event is being held Friday, June 9, 2017, 5:00pm-8:00pm, at Gateway City Arts in Holyoke.

Josiah Litant, Co-Director, [email protected], 413-420-8299 Catherine, Gobron, Co-Director, [email protected], 413-420-8299

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