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2,800 students graduate from CCSU in Hartford

HARTFORD — “It’s a big day for everyone,” said Christina Colorado. Colorado, a member of the Central Connecticut State University class of 201...

HARTFORD -- "It’s a big day for everyone," said Christina Colorado.

Colorado, a member of the Central Connecticut State University class of 2019, was one of 2,800 students to graduate from CCSU at the XL Center Saturday.

"It’s nervous. It’s exciting. It’s a little bit of everything," said Colorado.

Colorado received a bachelor’s degree in Biology during the first of two ceremonies. She is originally from Puerto Rico. After Hurricane Maria destroyed her university at home, she was able to transfer to CCSU to finish her degree as a part of the "Airbridge Program".

Her family flew up from Puerto Rico to share today’s achievement with her.

“It is so big for us," said Colorado. "It’s like a family reunion plus a graduation. It’s a fun time.”

Colorado and her classmates heard Governor Ned Lamont address the class of 2019. He talked about doing what you love, preparing for 21st-century jobs and taking pride in joining the Connecticut workforce.

"We have thousands of great jobs ready for them," said Gov. Lamont. "It’s an amazing time to be graduating into this workplace opportunity."

Graduates short walk across the stage symbolized the long journey it took for them to get there. It was a celebration of not only their hard work paying off but also a proud moment for their parents to reminisce.

"It seems like yesterday that I just dropped her off for kindergarten," said Sarah FitzGerald. "I’m astounded that she’s graduating college and I’m so proud of her, so proud. It’s amazing."

"I always say to people that you always want the best for your child but she surpassed our greatest expectations," said Ellen Rohner.

A long four years is over for these students and their parents but the next chapter of their lives has already begun with new challenges lying ahead.

"I’m attacking life as an adult," said Colorado. "Let’s see how that goes."