Ever since I was five, I have attended Morgan County schools, and I have known many of you for over half my life. It has been my pleasure to share the past 13 years with all of you as we have grown into the people we are today, and I could not be happier to be able to say that I am a member of the class of 2017. There are many things about you that amaze me, but one of the greatest is the sense of community that I have felt ever since the first day I walked into Morgan County Primary School in 2004. We’ve experienced a lot through our time together, from the excitement of going to the state basketball championship game four times in as many years (to name but one of many outstanding athletic performances during our time here) to the tragedy and immeasurable grief of losing a classmate, and we’ve always been there for one another. Even though I’ve admittedly always been fairly shy and quiet, there has never been a moment where I haven’t felt accepted, and I hope that the rest of you have experienced this powerful sense of community and “One Morgan” spirit.
It is precisely for this reason that, while graduation is a time of celebration and excitement, it can also be a time of painful goodbyes as we leave the people and places we know for unfamiliar territory. However, just because we are all moving on and going on our separate paths does not mean that what we have done and achieved together has to stop. In fact, quite the opposite: the experiences we’ve shared and things we’ve learned will allow us to succeed and accomplish more as we move forward. We may be done with high school, but we’re just getting started.