LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – It was a night of traditional Folklorico dances, emotional speeches and proud families.

Hispanic/Latino students from across the state gathered at the Lansing Center to be honored for their huge accomplishment of getting a college degree.

Nearly 80 Hispanic/Latino graduates walked across the stage celebrating something many in their families did not have the opportunity to do: earning a college degree.

It was part of the 6th annual Hispanic/Latino Statewide Graduation Ceremony.

“If we can applaud our young people through all their efforts and their hard work. we understand that there are a lot of barriers and challenges so this is a time to celebrate all those accomplishments,” said Executive Director of Hispanic/Latino Commission, Isabel Montemayor-Vazquez.

Organizers say nearly 96% of graduates here are the first in their entire family to get a college degree.

“I come from a migrant working family. I’m the first in my family to graduate college and high school,” said MSU graduate, Gisella Lorenzo.

MSU graduate, Lesly Morales, said they’re the first in their family to be born in the United States.

“I’m like ‘Woah! I’m finally doing this like American Dream,’ ” Morales said.

It’s an achievement graduates like Dayana Villagran dedicate to their families.

“This triumph is not only mine but that of my family, of my people and of my community,” Villagran said.

With music, dancing and colorful graduation stoles, the night was filled with honoring the Hispanic/ Latino culture.

Now, as these graduates look to their journey ahead, they’ll hold on tight to these words of encouragement to keep reaching for their dreams.

“I come from a migrant working family. I’m the first in my family to graduate college and high school,” said keynote speaker, Angela G. Reyes.

There were also 14 different recruiters at tonight’s graduation from organizations like Sparrow and the Lansing Police Department.

Graduates were encouraged to meet with them after the ceremony to make connections for potential job opportunities.