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Riverside High School's Mayor's Award Winner Santos A True Success Story

Christian Santos, Riverside High School's valedictorian and winner of the Mayor's Award. Photo Credit: Pamela Stern
Angel Vargas, Frank Vela and Kenny Torres will all be going to Westchester Community College in the fall. Photo Credit: Pamela Stern
Suwada Contch, Sierra Medley, Tiara Moultrie, and Tyra Champagnie were excited to finally be done wityh high school. Photo Credit: Pamela Stern
Maria Estrada, Kevin Estrada, Oscar Estrada, Adrian Estrada, and Natalia were so happy and proud of Kevin who will be going to Westchester Community College in the fall. Photo Credit: Pamela Stern
Teejay Andrews and Hanssel Hinojosa will both be attending BMCC in the fall. Photo Credit: Pamela Stern
Jessica Herrera and her family were posing for pictures because they were so proud of Jessica. Herrera will be attending Westchester Community College in the fall. Photo Credit: Pamela Stern
Christin Rodriguez is so emotional for her daughter, Angela Ortiz. Photo Credit: Pamela Stern
Niara Brinson, Jaleel Brinson, Angelique Heaven, Mellisa Heaven, Keie Greenhill, and Alexis Brown were so happy! " I couldn't be prouder of my daughter. She had great teachers and the staff at Riverside High School was fantastic." Photo Credit: Pamela Stern
Graduates excited about the end of their days at Riverside High School. Photo Credit: Pamela Stern

YONKERS, N. Y. —  Riverside High School's fifth annual graduation, held at the Westchester County Center, was special because Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano handed out a very special award.

The Mayor's Award was given to Christian Santos, the valedictorian of Riverside High School.

Santos was diagnosed at the age of 5 with autism spectrum disorder and was in special education classes throughout his schooling until he went to Riverside High School.

At Riverside High School he was mainstreamed into "regular" classes with all of the students.

Santos was one of many on hand who had reason to be proud.

Christin Rodriguez was very proud and happy for her daughter, Angela Ortiz.

"I feel excited, but I am probably going to cry," said Rodriguez, who moved to Yonkers from the Bronx so that her daughter could have a better education.

Rodriguez is a middle school math teacher in the Bronx and was very impressed with the Yonkers School System.

"I am so proud of my daughter and so happy that she is graduating on time," said Rodriguez.

Santos will be attending Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the fall to study Video Game Design and Development and Computer Science.

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