June 4, 2019 — Cristo Rey Jesuit High School Milwaukee graduated its first class of seniors on May 31 at the Church of the Gesu. All 85 graduates will be continuing on with higher education—and all are the first generation in their family to do so.
The class collectively earned more than $3.5 million in institutional scholarships and grants toward higher education. Students will attend schools that include the College of the Holy Cross, Marquette University, and the University of Wisconsin–Madison.
Cristo Rey Milwaukee opened in 2015 and like the 35 other Cristo Rey Jesuit college preparatory high schools in the United States, its work-study program offers an innovative education in which economically disadvantaged students gain valuable job experience working at area organizations while earning the majority of their tuition.
"This is a historic day and a momentous milestone for our graduates and the Milwaukee community," said Cristo Rey president Andrew Stith at the ceremony. "I can vividly remember our first new family orientation four years ago. I shared with this first class that as our trailblazers they would experience moments of great joy, as well as seemingly insurmountable challenges in high school. ... Class of 2019, I'm so proud to see you in your caps and gowns today." [Sources: JSOnline, TMJ4]
The photos are available in our online photo gallery.
(Photos: Jeff Zmania, JMZphoto.com)