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JCHS Valedictorian speeches

“Do you remember your first day of kindergarten? How about each and every day that year? It’s probably difficult for us to recall specifics because it seems like such as distant memory.
“In kindergarten we all knew exactly what we wanted to be when we grew up, and our teachers were proud to have a class full of so many presidents and astronauts. Marriage decisions were made while playing ‘Farmer in the Dell’ before story time and we could color away our troubles.
“To this point, school has been a major part of all of our lives, and it has given us many of our earliest memories. Today this part of our lives is officially over, making way for a new path and the beginning of a new life. Some of us will choose to go back to school for a while longer, while others may choose to go straight to work or to proudly serve our country in the military.
“We aren't the children we were in kindergarten, and though we may be afraid or unwilling to admit it, we are growing up, and about to journey out into the world on our own to be responsible for our choices, and inevitably make a few wrong ones. But I know without a doubt that we will all learn from those wrong decisions and they will mold us into the people we are supposed to be.
“Today, right after this ceremony, we make our first decision. We will either rejoice that the days of laughing at the “LOL” song and stressing over being late to Mr. Kittle's class are finally over, or cry because this part of our lives has come to an end. We are the Class of 2012 and I know that our choices will help make our futures bright.
“It's time for us to believe in ourselves just as our parents did when we first walked down the hallway in kindergarten, throw on a smile, and take that first step into the rest of our lives.”
~Deidre Burgess

“First, I would like to take a moment to thank all of the teachers who put up with us and helped us get where we are today. We could not have done it without you.
“When we started school, our parents were there to hold our hands and guide us the way we needed to go. We would not have made it here today without the courage and support of our families. They have helped us with everything from tying our shoes to paying our cell phone bills. As we sit here in our caps and gowns, we know that we have made them proud. We have achieved a goal that we have worked towards for 13 long years. While those years have given us sleepless nights and enough homework to make us cry, they have also given us memories to last a lifetime. From sharing a snack in kindergarten while reading Dr. Seuss to visiting our nation’s capital to dancing all night at our senior prom; we will cherish these moments forever.
“In this last year, our teachers saw us mature as we completed all of our assignments on time, stayed awake in class, didn’t play with balloons or paper airplanes, and absolutely never skipped school. Okay, so maybe we haven’t shown our maturity at all times, but we have it.
“Our days of high school are now over. We will never walk through these doors as students again. We must all leave the safety net our families provide and show the world the intelligent, strong, and independent young men and women we have become. This means that many of us will be moving away and may never see each other again until our reunion. By then who knows what we will be: video game designers, mechanics, doctors, army sergeants, maybe even a celebrity or two. I just want you to know that I wish you the best of luck in whatever life has in store.
“Now before the tears start falling, let’s take the advice of our childhood hero Dr. Seuss, ‘Don’t cry because it’s over; smile because it happened.’ Congratulations Class of 2012. We did it!”
~Greta Burgess