Heritage Christian School community celebrates its final graduate
May 29, 2016
Steamboat Springs — Jacqueline "Jackie" Nicole Poirot was the star of the show Sunday at Heritage Christian's School's eighteenth and final graduation ceremony.
Poirot was the only member of the class of 2016, but that didn't stop school leaders from celebrating her graduation with a full ceremony at the campus.
"It was a little chaotic, but it was fun," said Poirot, who sat alone on the left side of the stage during a fun, light-hearted hour-long event, complete with “Pomp and Circumstance,” a multimedia presentation and recessional.
"I know I'm proud of her, and you all are also proud of her," said Dave Entwistle, Heritage Christian School administrator, while welcoming a few dozen attendees.
Poirot, 17, was born in Michigan and later moved to Routt County, and she has attended Heritage Christian School since eighth grade.
While she originally had a couple of classmates, Poirot said she had been in a class of her own for a while, and knew the solo graduation ceremony would be in her future.
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In school, she served as student council class representative, secretary, treasurer and student council president.
She also spent time singing in part of a chorale group called Heartsong, with Heritage Christian School alumni, including both members of the class of 2015.
The quartet sang Amazing Grace during the graduation program.
Keynote speaker Melinda Clark, the director of Selah, spoke to the audience about her fondness for Poirot, who she said sometimes shows up unannounced to her home.
Clark said Poirot probably wasn't too excited about having a ceremony dedicated to her.
"If you know Jackie at all, you known there are few things more dreadful than what she is experiencing right now," Clark said.
Clark discussed passages from the bible and told Poirot that God approved of her.
"God already approves of you whole-heartedly," Clark said. "He likes you a lot."
Clark told Poirot to trust in the love of God and to follow God's plan.
"Run toward Jesus, and do the great things he has chosen for you," Clark said.
Poirot was accepted to attend Stony Brook University on Long Island in New York, where she plans to study biomedical engineering.
She hopes to pursue a career in medicine and work hard to improve the field in any way she can.
"I just want to learn as much as I can," Poirot said.
Poirot was the last of 94 graduates to receive a diploma from Heritage Christian School, which closes this week after 29 years of operation.