Dear High School Graduate,

Everyone thinks of graduation as this incredible thing, maybe even a scary thing. When in fact, we have been graduating our entire lives. We have graduated from crawling to walking to mumbling to talking. Everything that we have overcome during these last 18 years have been graduating instances.

Everything that we have worked for, accomplished and failed at, have been moments of building. Those graduating moments, have been essential in the process of constructing ourselves into the person we are becoming.

We have finished the foundation, just as a house is unable to stand without one. We too will fail without that foundation. Our education is that foundation for the rest of our lives.

We are at a point in our lives where we are giving up everything that we have known.

Some of us are going off to college, some are going straight into the workforce, while others have chosen to put their lives on hold to serve and honor our country and others are still trying to figure life out.

My wish for everyone is to dream big. Because if it was not for the dreams and aspirations we had when we were little, we would not have made it to where we are today. For those who are going off to fight injustice, or those who wish to work in a lab, or the creative minds who will invent something great one day; all came from a simple dream. We all dream, it’s something that starts when we are young. Without dreams, we would have no motivation, no determination, no destination.

Each and every one of those accomplishments over the last four years were not by accident or chance. They are the result of all the hours of hard work, dedication, determination and perseverance we showed to strive for the best.

Four years ago, when you walked in the doors of your high school, your principal most likely told you to make high school the best four years. I hope you did more than that. I hope you made the years unforgettable.

Things that I will miss from high school is going to be the Friday night football games that we never failed to pack the house, the spirit week activities leading up to the homecoming dance and the comfort of those around you who you've known for years and years.

We have set the bar high for the incoming class for the next several years to come, and we are not stopping here. I know that with the work ethic, motivation and amount of goal-oriented people we have sitting here today, we are going to make a change. You just have to believe it now!

High school is now a thing of the past. Learn from it, take what you want and leave the rest. Dream big and make the next four years of your life the best so far.