1 septembre 2023

Dual Diploma’s 2023 Graduation Ceremony

The United States invited to Paris for the national High School Diploma ceremony for Academica Dual Diploma™ students.

On Friday, July 7, 2023, the graduation ceremony for more than 1,200 Academica Dual Diploma™ students took place. It was at the Dôme de Paris, in the presence of the Academica school group’s American management.

Coming from all over France, our graduates gathered to celebrate the end of their studies. In an American program of excellence: the Dual Diploma Program.

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62 schools gathered at the Dôme de Paris to celebrate their students

For this graduation ceremony, Academica Dual Diploma™ brought together its students, their parents, principals and teachers at the legendary Dôme de Paris.

The event honored 62 of our partner schools and 1,262 high school seniors who earned their US High School Diploma, simultaneously with the French Baccalauréat, in digital, in 3 to 4 years.

A unique and emotional moment

At the time of the ceremony count down, joy, pride and emotion were palpable. The pride of the students added to that of the teachers and program directors who had accompanied them throughout their studies.

A certain solemnity was felt when the assembly rose to the first notes of the American national anthem.

Élizabeth de Montlivault and Chantal Firino Martell, the directors behind the Dual Diploma Program™ in France, hosted the ceremony.

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Marie Bellemin, valedictorian of the class of 2023

The term Valedictorian comes from the Latin vale dicere, literally “to bid farewell”. It refers to the student who achieved the highest marks in her class and was thus chosen to give a speech at the graduation ceremony.

In her speech, Marie recalled the challenges she had overcome over the years, and expressed her gratitude to those who had supported her. The American teachers, the Academica team, the program directors, her family … . All played an essential role in her educational adventure.

This experience has enabled her to discover new perspectives and cultures, and has broadened her horizons. As she prepares to join Sciences Po Paris for a double degree in mathematics, she is grateful for everything the program has offered her.

As a member of our Academica Family, Marie sees this experience as a powerful symbol. Despite our differences, thousands of people from different countries and cultures can be united by the same goal.

Antonin Léonard: Keynote Speaker, impact entrepreneur

Our Keynote Speaker for this year’s class of 2023 was Antonin Léonard. For over 10 years, Antonin has supported talented and visionary teams, creating various media to promote new business models and organizations at the service of the common good.

Founder of the international NGO Ouishare and partner in Asterion Impact, a young impact investment company, Antonin passionately shared his experience with our students. His speech left us with one word in mind: “Dare”.

“So, dear Class of 2023, take advantage of this extraordinary opportunity to discover the world around you. And above all, don’t forget to dare. Dare to act, dare to be. Dare to know yourself. For it is in this courageous quest that you will find your way.”


Students certified by the Competitive College Club, EducationUSA and Fulbright France

This year, eleven of our students distinguished themselves through their participation in the Competitive College Club, earning them certification.

We welcomed on stage Briac Sockalingum, alumni of the class of 2021 and certified by the Competitive College Club (CCC) in partnership with EducationUSA and Fulbright France. Briac shared with us his vision of the Competitive College Club: a program that enables students to explore American culture, in an atmosphere of excellence, while cultivating the unique Franco-American dual degree experience.

The Competitive College Club, a program of group workshops run by EducationUSA network advisors in France, is designed to help motivated, independent French high school students apply to American universities. These bi-monthly workshops, led by EducationUSA counselors or outside speakers, offer invaluable support throughout the process.

Academica Dual Diploma actively contributed to the creation of the CCC in France. Every year, several Dual Diploma students have the opportunity to take part in this exceptional program and obtain their certification. It’s a real recognition of their commitment and efforts.

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The American Academica International Studies team

Academica’s American team was also present, with members having made the special trip to Paris for the occasion. Several speeches were given, including one by Antonio L. Roca, Managing Director of Academica Virtual Education, and Gina Lalicata, Principal of Academica, who congratulated the students and shared one of Academica’s main missions: to make digital education human.

Of Antonio L.Roca’s intervention, we will remember these quotes :

“Learning is the only thing the mind never exhaust, never fears and never regrets”Leonardo Da Vinci

“An investement in knowledge always pays the best dividend”Benjamin Franklin

Gina Lalicata also shared with us one of her favourite quote from Helen Keller, an American author, political activist and lecturer who overcame blindness and deafness, she said :

“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement, nothing can be done without hope and confidence”.

The ceremony concluded with the traditional tassel turning. Academica Principal Gina Lalicata accompanied the students for this grand and joyful moment.

Congratulations to our students

Once again, we wish all our graduates the very best for their higher education. We congratulate you on your results, your efforts and this achievement. You can be proud of yourselves! Congratulations, you did it!

As the Dual Diploma Program continues to flourish, with over 10,000 students and 2,000 graduates for July 2024, we look forward to seeing the Class of 2024 next year for an equally grand graduation ceremony!

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Images of the ceremony

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