By Melissa McCaghren
Nine Southland Eagles graduates walked down the school gymnasium one more time as high schoolers Friday evening (May 20) during SISD’s commencement ceremonies.
The Valedictorian for this year was Elizabeth Payton and Salutatorian was Kalli Davis.
Payton welcomed everyone to their graduation and said she was grateful to be able to speak to them Friday evening.
She then talked about how her class has been diverse. “That is one thing I don’t believe any of us can disagree with. We each have our own strengths and weaknesses but we’ve learned how to balance each other out for the most part,” she said, adding most of the class had been together since pre-kindergarten.
“That’s the benefits to class sizes at Southland. You grow into a family whether you like it or not. It may be a little dysfunctional family, but it is a family.”
She then talked about everyone learning about relationships through life experiences including fights, frustrations and the friendships one can count on. “We’re about to lose that comfort. Following tonight we will be entering the big adult world,” she said.
“To my fellow graduates, I know it seems daunting going from here. This is the end to a chapter in our lives or maybe even the end of the first book in the series,” Payton added. “These memories have helped shape and prepare us to be adults and to rely on our selves. Don’t forget to build relationships with those around you though. Make your own little families and lean on them when needed.
“You will never be alone – it is also a good time to go out and explore the world without so many restraints and rules.
Davis quoted George Foreman about reminiscing about good memories of the past and leaning to enjoy today and its benefits. “It gives you happiness right now and it becomes a good memory later. These memories are something we’ll remember forever. They’re the ones we will look back on,” she said, listing memories such as games being made up during lunch and variations of the game Wall Ball. “We’ve had many memories together, from beginnings now we’ve become a family running together every day.”
For more information, please read the Thursday edition of The Slatonite.