Rafa Baca giving the commencement speech at Adelante Dual Language Academy. Congrats to the class of 2013! twitter.com/SJEarthquakes/…— San Jose Earthquakes (@SJEarthquakes) June 13, 2013
On a cool summer afternoon in the middle of East San Jose, Quakes midfielder Rafael Baca found a way to make a very special day for 46 middle schoolers all the more memorable. Chosen as the keynote speaker for the Adalante Dual Language Academy 8th grade graduation, Baca was met with a warm welcome full of applause. While Baca chose to deliver his speech in spanish, making it tougher for me to understand, it was clear from the reactions of the students that he was able to captivate them and provide them with excellent advice for the future.
Born in Tuxpan, Mexico and raised in Englewood, California, Baca understands the importance of being proficient in more than one language. Fittingly, all the students at Adalante had completed an enjoyable nine years, armed with the ability to speak both Spanish and English and ready to move on to high school. After Baca spoke, three students had the honor of recounting their experiences at Adalante, emphasizing the close-knit community and "family" of the school. The entire ceremony was festive, as even Baca himself couldn't resist dancing to the spanish music coming from the speakers. Baca wasn't finished, however, after delivering his speech. The midfielder was called back on stage to shake the students hands before they received their diplomas, and eventually sign a few autographs for his fans.