Ladies and Gentlemen, you have all taken your precious time to come attend this important day for us seniors and I want to thank you all. Whether or not it was your decision, eh well, it’s just a couple hours out of many that will occur in your life. Hopefully, you are here because it brings you joy to see someone you care about accomplish something. Modern American society views high school graduation as an honor, which it is. And we should all feel honored to see the people we care about accomplish something today. This specific graduation is special because all of us on this stage have not only accomplished the 12 grim years of academia, we have all succeeded at life (so far) and our experiences in our lives have all formed the people that we are today. We seniors have all gone through struggles which have given us strength. Today is the day we start a new struggle, the struggle of independence, through which we will grow strength. As we leave being the kings of childhood, we make our first steps as adults. Today is the graduation of self, meaning we are celebrating all the time and effort not only put into academics but also put into our own lives.
My mom passed away three years ago. She had many struggles, but I had hoped she could make it to today. When I was 8 I begged her to better herself so she could make it to my graduation, but unfortunately she couldn’t. The reason I bring this up is because, unlike her, all of us were able to make it here. All the students graduating today have struggled with our thoughts, we have gotten stuck or simply lost hope. Yet we have made it to today, whether it was our loved ones who gave us hope or our friends who have given us a new point of view on life or we, ourselves, who found the courage to succeed, which means we are capable of growth. I personally want to thank my dad who is the best father I could ask for. He has supported me through everything and is one of the strongest people I know. My half mom, Monique who stepped up as a mother to me as well as cared for me: you are one of the best role models, someone whom I look up to dearly, my sisters paloma and carmela who have been amazing, always making me laugh, two very smart young ladies. And my grandma who is my rock, she is so wise and I always feel like I am learning from her.
I would also like to thank Noah who is my advisor, he has helped guide me to be successful, I would like to thank Kevin, my dorm parent, he has dealt with a fun but wild dorm this year and has been a great dorm parent. Sarah who dealt with my craziness, and Brian and Julie gaffey who have been a parents to all of us and not only did their job but put their heart into the job. Without all these people I couldn’t picture myself graduating; it’s hard to picture yourself in the future when you picture yourself alone.
All of us have been given love and time from people who care about us and today is the day we prove we care for them as well. Today is not just a cheesy day to wear a gown and celebrate our academic lives. Today is the start of our own lives. This graduation is a reminder that even though we have had a longer path to success, we have reached it. Yes, there is more to accomplish but that comes with time. Let’s start with today, the day we complete adolescence and start a new book, which is adulthood.
I am grateful for all the things I have been through because they have made today happen for me and I am grateful to be graduating with this class, I have been able to get to know each and every individual personally: There is Angela who does headstands at weird times to brighten the mood. That’s something I admire about her: her ability to see the positivity in things even when it’s easier to see the negative. I would like to work on that in my life. There is Shelby, who I have not conversed with much but when I do see her, she has a big smile on her face and is usually barefoot. I admire Shelby because she is studious, she seems to actually enjoy learning and that is a quality I wish I had, something I will work on in my life. There is Adrianna who has surprised me with her interest in biochemistry. In fact she has surprised me in many ways: Adrianna is usually quiet but when she wants to be loud and have a good time she knows how to. Jack, who can look intimidating but he is one of the sweetest guys I know. He is also someone who is able to express his opinion in a non-offensive way, something I could work on. Julia is someone I look up to because she is undeniably herself and has the strength to do things that she believes will make her the best person she can be. Julia can be pretty blunt; she will tell you what is on her mind and sometimes you may not want to hear it but her advice is usually pretty good. Elizabeth who comes off sweet and gentle but can be pretty sassy at times. She is someone I admire for her academic strengths as well as her love for children. Anna who loves animals, especially her dog, and is very creative, as well as caring. I have seen her care for many different people here at Oliverian and that is a beautiful quality. Emily, who doesn’t give herself enough credit for her brains. She also has a very big heart and has a good sense of humor. Her energy is always welcoming and fun, she has been a good friend. Cam, who bought the world’s hottest hot sauce and who always wears a pokemon hat, someone who is quiet but when you have a conversation with him it is something you learn from. Nico, who doesn’t give herself enough credit for her strength. She is a diva and I hope she never loses that part of her. She is hard to crack but once you get to the goo she is a very sweet person. Miles who has been a great friend to me and is one of the smartest guys I know. He is a leader.
Now that I have finished sweet talking you all, it is that time ladies and gentlemen when we feel that feeling of bittersweetness, the time that is inevitable, the time I stop talking and we move on to our lives. Seniors, we will all move in different directions but we will all accomplish life on earth together. Congratulations Class of 2019, we have made it. I wish every individual a happy and healthy life.