AHS Graduation 2012

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Graduation Program 2012


A Word from Our Superintendent

Graduation is a time to be happy, to look forward to fresh opportunities; to let the past melt away into the horizon and await the new things life has in store. It is a time of celebration for the whole family, friends and neighbors. For the graduate, it is the beginning of many things to come, the stage where the foundation for your whole life is laid. There are members of the audience who have helped you reach this moment. Whether that help was a parent checking that you got your homework done, or a grandpa enlivening a history assignment with their own recollections, or a coach who gave you a pep talk after a disappointing defeat; they all helped you on the road to this achievement. They all celebrate your transition from high school student to future young adults and citizens.

I’d like to spend a moment reflecting on the Class of 2012; an inspiring collection of young people with a rousing sense of spirit, a heartening level of compassion, a shining intellect, and an undeniable spirit that is uniquely their own. They are bright and curious, their attitude is especially welcoming and easy-going, and they sincerely care about each other.

In speaking with a group of graduating seniors I was interested to hear how they describe their fellow graduates. They spoke of unity and working as a cohesive unit with a common purpose ever since they arrived at Alhambra. They have forged friendships with students from every grade and are comfortable with freshman, sophomores and juniors alike. They have a profound respect for their teachers and the impact they have had on their education. They are deeply grateful for the opportunities and support they have received from their teachers and the entire staff of Alhambra High School.

This is an exceptionally bright and talented group of students who have high aspirations and have worked hard to accomplish their goals. 110 seniors were awarded over $153,000 in scholarships. Additionally, students will be receiving over $300,000 from their chosen colleges. This distinguished class will be sending graduates to 23 different colleges and I am proud to graduate a class of such good-hearted, talented students.

Your future is unfolding in front of our eyes. You have more information at your fingertips than previous generations had in their college libraries, and the spread of ideas can no longer be contained, not even by the great firewall of China. Don’t be a political bystander, democracy requires your participation. Martin Luther King said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that really matter.” Lift your voice when you see injustice. Be decent and fair and insist that others do so as well. Seek to build connections with people who are different and those whose views you may not understand.

This is the year of the Olympics and like Olympians you share a commitment to excellence. An Olympian is an ordinary person with a passion, persistence and a willingness to succeed. They are ordinary people who choose to strive to do extraordinary things. I’ve seen your passion and I’ve seen your service. I’ve seen you engage in causes you believe such as events like lose the shoes and invisible children. Yours is a generation eager, impatient even, to step into the rushing waters of history and change its course.

I would like to share some of the wisdom and insights of an exceptional woman, Marian Wright Edelman, founder of the Children’s Defense Fund and Civil Rights Activist. She said, “Service is the rent we pay for living…it is the true measure the only measure of our success.” Think of yourself in a larger context and give back. Give freely of yourself. Think of the others who have come before you to make your lot in life a little easier. Give back. Recognize that all of us are enriched when we see our charge in life is to make the world a better place.

You are the future leaders of tomorrow. Be good stewards of our environment and resources. Lead us to a world free of violence and full of tolerance. As Gandhi said, “We must be the change we wish to see in the world.” Congratulations to the class of 2012. I wish you every success.