On behalf of thegraduating class of 2018, I say welcome to everyone and thank you forcelebrating this special day with us.
When we first became freshmen four yearsago, we didn’t know what we’re getting ourselves into. We didn’t know whatjourneys would lay ahead of us in the future. No one knew what to expect forthe next four years. We didn’t know about the struggles we would encounter but look at us now. We are here. Lookaround you, look at where you are sitting. This is your moment.
All themistakes that you made, all of the sleeplessnights, all of the times you hated goingto high school, take a long look. All of those days will soon become memories. Webegan high school as children, but we’re leaving here as adults. We’vecompleted a basic education that will serve as the platform we use to launchourselves into our futures.
Some of us will go on to college, others will gostraight into the workforce, but each ofus will travel our own path. After we get ourdiplomas, we will enter into what those before us call it as the real world. Aswe go out into the real world, we’ll begin to chase our dreams.
We all havedifferent ideas on which direction we will go, but we all have the same dreamin the end: We want to be happy and successful. Keeping this dream in mind, weneed to discover our vision of the path to happiness, and not wait to begin thejourney. Dreams are where we want to end up, encompassing every aspect of ourlives. Visions are more specific. They are the paths to achieve our dream.Without a vision, a dream will never become a reality.
We have so manypassions and talents that we will have to reach beyond our career. Whether wereach out to the community or the church,focus on a hobby or family, or even become a doctor or nurse, it doesn’tmatter. Our dream is to be happy and successful. Our pursuit of happinessdoesn’t have to wait until we are older. We can achieve it right now.
Noteveryone has a vision planned out. It may take others a while longer to discovera vision, but if we put off chasing the dream until the point where it’ll betoo late, that dream will never become a reality.No matter where wego or what we do, there are challenges ahead of us. What I’m asking from eachof you, and from myself, is to meet those challenges straight on with your headheld high and your heart wide open.
It’s not enough to simply try to get by inlife. That doesn’t move the world forward. You must try to excel in everythingyou do; strive for excellence in every task, large or small. We will facenumerous challenges, but I expect great things from the Class of 2018. We arean incredible group of people with so much potential. Every single one of ushas something to offer the world. Some of you may even be hiding it from therest of us, just waiting to surprise us all.
Well, don’t wait anylonger. This is our moment, and from here on out, we control how we use ourtime to get us to where we want to be. To our dreams. Keep looking for yourvisions and paths to success, and once you see them, never lose sight of them. Lifeis short. Why not start now? Sometimes, all it takes is one small step, andthen another small step, and then another.
We don’t leap a mile. If we justkeep taking steps, we’ll get there. It may take a while, but if it’s worth it,we’ll get there.
And one last thing, if you’re not doing it for the person inthe mirror, then what’s the purpose.