Congratulations to all of our graduates! As you celebrate the completion of your high school education, you join a unique and very fortunate minority; according to some sources only about 6% of the world population receive a high school diploma. Your accomplishment is significant and we are very, very proud of you!
You have grown up so well. In every conversation I have had with your generation I am consistently impressed with your knowledge, the perspective you have, and the hopes and dreams you have. You are incredibly talented. When you share your accomplishments with me, I am in awe at how wonderfully brilliant you are – every one of your, without exception – each in your own unique and special way. I truly believe the world is a better place because each and every one of you is here.
To me, being an educated person is important because it is through education that you discover the freedom of choice. We hope that your education has equipped you with the skills and knowledge you need to make good choices in life, work and further learning.
I know you each have dreams and life opportunities to which you aspire. I encourage you to reach high, follow your dreams and enjoy the journey. This doesn’t mean that your dreams can’t change; they can and many will. Comedian Stephen Colbert said, “Thankfully dreams can change. If we had all stuck with our first dreams the world would be overrun by cowboys and princesses. So whatever your dream is right now, if you don’t achieve it you haven’t failed.”
Although today is an important celebration, it marks neither a beginning nor an ending. Often people have to say they need to finish school and experience the real world. I have news fro you, you have been living in the real world from the moment you were born. This is it! You’re already doing it!
The significance of this celebration is that you have proven yourselves.
As hard as you have worked in order to be at this juncture in your life, you need to know that your education has also been a gift to you. It has been a gift from your parents, family members, our talented staff, and our community. Many people have sacrificed and struggled and celebrated with you through the years. I hope that you take opportunity to say thank you to them. They have shared your laughter, your tears, your victories, your struggles and your successes.
What you do with this gift no is entirely up to you. However I promise you, if you let it, your education will open doors to a future we cannot even yet imagine.
Today you have high hopes for a wonderful future. I share these feelings. I hope that your lives are filled with wonderful people, amazing experiences, lifelong learning – and all that you need in order to be happy, healthy, fulfilled adults.
“I hope that your dreams take you to the corner of your smiles, to the highest of your hopes, to the windows of your opportunities, and to the most special places your heart has ever known.” (author unknown)