Celebration Honors Napa High School Graduates Supported by If Given A Chance

Napa, California—April 22, 2023—If Given A Chance (IGAC) will honor 14 Napa County 2023 high school graduates who have faced extraordinary challenges and are continuing their education with the organization’s support. The “Celebrating Our Stars” event, which is open to the public, takes place from 5-9 p.m. May 16 at Napa Valley College Performing Arts Center.

Kaylen Vaughn, one of the students being celebrated, said “If Given A Chance has built a relationship with me by being very supportive in helping with college applications, providing constant reminders on what I need to do to get prepared for college, and checking up on me to make sure I’m on track. They do all these things without me having to ask. They make it their mission not only to provide financial support but to also make sure, in a very personal way, that I succeed in life.” Kaylen, who will be graduating from American Canyon High School, plans to attend Langston University in Oklahoma to study electrical engineering.  

All students being honored receive financial support and mentoring for academic and independent life skills from IGAC while pursuing their education, either in college or vocational school. They are among over 400 Napa County youth who have been helped by IGAC over the past three decades.

Celebration Honors Napa High School Graduates Supported by If Given A Chance

Tickets to the event and information on being a sponsor are available at ifgivenachance.org/celebrating-our-stars.  Organizations sponsoring the event include Alta Mesa Group, Bank of Marin, Castello di Amorosa, The Craig and Kathryn Hall Foundation, The Doctors Company, Gasser Foundation, Goldman Sachs, Kaiser Family Foundation, PG&E, and V. Sattui Winery. A pre-event wine and beer reception will begin at 5 p.m.featuring wines donated by Caymus Vineyards, Domaine Carneros, and Hess Persson Estates and beer donated by Le Cheve Bakery and Brews.  

“We are excited to celebrate our high school graduates and to mark our 28th year helping vulnerable, yet resilient, students achieve success in college or vocational school, careers, and life as contributing members of our community,” said Beth Fox, IGAC’s executive director.

The dinner event will include inspiring stories from accomplished alumni, a performance by Transcendence Theater, and personal stories from the graduating students. The graduates will receive certificates from California Senator Bill Dodd, D-Napa; Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry, D-Winters; US Rep. Mike Thompson (D- St. Helena); and IGAC representatives. Napa County Superior Court Judge Scott R. L. Young will introduce each student following the tradition of his father, retired Napa County Superior Court Judge Ron Young, who performed this function at the awards ceremony for over 20 years.

Along with Kaylen, the following students will be honored: 

  • Ariana Mason and Chloë Dinsdale of Napa High School
  • Angela Garcia Bogarin, Camila Rivera Rangel, Isabelle Divingnzzo, Liliana Carreon, Nayla Navarro, Roberto Gonzalez Torres, and Sarahi Romero Munoz of Vintage High School
  • Gema Jimenez Ceja of St. Helena High School
  • Shannon Guilliams and Valeria Izel Chino of Calistoga High School
  • Vanna Frias of American Canyon HIgh School 

About If Given A Chance

If Given A Chance identifies vulnerable, yet resilient, Napa County high school juniors who have faced extraordinary challenges and demonstrated a commitment to continuing their education to better their lives. It helps students regain their sense of self-worth, emotional balance, and independent living skills through mentoring, life-skills training, mental health support, and financial assistance. IGAC provides ongoing support as these students navigate the challenges of obtaining a college degree or completing a technical training program so they can achieve job security, experience increased quality of life, and become contributing members of their community.

For more information, contact: Beth Fox, executive director, at 707-536-7834 or email Beth@ifgivenachance.org

For More Information

For more information, contact: Beth Fox, executive director, at 707-536-7834 or email Beth@ifgivenachance.org