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Weatherly graduates take steps into new journey

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    Weatherly high school principal Anthony Despirito talks to the class of 2019 in the school cafeteria before their graduation ceremony.

Published June 08. 2019 05:49AM


Weatherly Area High School’s Class of 2019 took their own giant leap as they embarked on different journeys after graduation on Friday.

Forty-eight diplomas were given to ecstatic graduates. Along with their achievements, the Class of 1969 was recognized as the 50th year class. Superintendent Teresa Young addressed the members of the 1969 class as they were in attendance.

Raymond Marcero was the commencement guest speaker. Marcero, a 1999 graduate of WHS, is now a career member of the U.S. Foreign Services and Information Management Officer with the U.S. Department of State and currently lives in North Africa. He spoke to the class about how the changes of 20 years affect an individual.

“Your life will bring experiences that you can’t even imagine today. Set lofty goals, stay true to yourself, and never stop trying. Everything will be fine. In 20 years, take stock, maybe write a speech and remember Chekhov’s advice – look boldly into the future and live life to the fullest,” Marcero said.

Class of 2019 president Owen Stewart reflected on his time spent at his high school in a joking way, but he acknowledged the preparation he was given by his teachers and peers.

“Personally, this school has taught me a lot about myself, which is surprising because I don’t think I took that class,” Stewart said. “The most important thing I learned is the world is a big, scary place with lots of things I don’t know, but being here these last 13 years taught me how to learn those things.”

Valedictorian Nikki Polivka spoke on how life experiences change everyone’s plan, but it should be accepted.

“Not everything is going to turn out the way you want it to, but there is one thing you control. You can set goals for yourself and it is up to you to get there,” Polivka said.

Salutatorian Kathleen Lily Graham formed her speech around the poem “Crossing” by Jericho Brown.

The end of the poem reads, “I’m more than a conqueror, bigger than bravery. I don’t march. I’m the one who leaps.”

Graham believed the poem signified the Class of 2019. “We marched into school every day for the last 13 years. We marched into the auditorium just a little while ago. Our time to march is over. Now, it’s time to leap.”


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