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DC school hosts Signing Day celebration for 19 student athletes

Nineteen student athletes at Friendship Collegiate Academy in Northeast D.C. took part in Signing Day and signed letters of intent to play college football. Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018 (ABC7 photo)

It was a momentous and emotional day at Friendship Collegiate Academy in Northeast D.C. where 19 student athletes signed letters of intent to play college football. The group included both the class valedictorian and salutatorian.

The graduating seniors’ post-secondary plans include Bowie State University, Elizabeth City State University, Glendale State University, Shephard University, the University of Maryland at College Park, Virginia State University and Wesley College.

Each young man thanked the public charter school’s staff, their coaches, families and mentors. Some acknowledged they were one of the few - or the first - in their families to attend college. And for many, the emotion of the moment was overwhelming.

The group included team captain and class valedictorian Chauncey Moore who plans to study computer science and cyber security.

“I'll be attending Temple University in the fall,” Moore said, as the gymnasium erupted with applause.

His mother Carletta Moore said, “I am ecstatic. I'm super proud of Chauncey. He's done an outstanding job.”

Moore chose Temple over 13 other offers. They were all full-rides and all Division One programs.

“My heart was beating the whole time on the stage. So when I finally got a chance to pull on that hat and reveal to everyone where I was going, it was just like a big weight was lifted off my shoulders,” Moore said.

A few of his teammates are still weighing their options, deciding between competing offers from different universities.

“We're really telling them that football is the key to get to go to college. But even in the NFL, if you go that way, it's not the end. Build your career upon what you learned in college and take it further,” said Principal Curtis Lawrence.

Since 2004, administrators said Friendship Collegiate grads have earned more than $11 million in scholarships. And they hope holding these Signing Day events will help motivate the school's younger classes to excel too.

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