WHS Class of 2021 Graduation Speeches

WHS Class of 2021


Scott Kirk

Scott Kirk Top row: Shawn William Evans, Jr, Antonio Herrera, Alvin Jason Knowles, Middle row: Grant K. Teal, Adam L. Puckett, Katherine Marie Houchin, Koby Keith Harris, Garett Merle Korslund, Colton Wayne Van Blaricom, Zachary Michael Bly, Bottom row: Kaylee Renee White, Quentin Marcum, Teagen Caroline Larsen, Stanley Cagle, Emilie Rose Bundy, Jillian Elizabeth Foxe

Valedictorian Speech

by Koby Harris

High School is really a short time in our lives, a time when later we look down the road, we realize how impactful this time was in many ways. High school is a time where we develop a lot of our personalities; traits and characteristics we will hold with us for many years and possibly the rest of our lives. We made friends when we played sports or went to each other's houses almost every day after school.

We, the Class of 2021, became like a family. We would go out of our way to make sure each and every one of us were doing okay, and we all were doing our best. When Covid hit, we were all excited to be out of school, but we quickly learned that we missed seeing our family five days a week.

High School is a time when we make some big decisions about our life. Most of us are thinking about where we want to go to school, where we would like to work and discover what other career choices are possible.

Unfortunately, this time is also a sad point in time. Our high school friends will now be going to different schools and jobs where we won't spend every day with them. Tonight we will be going our separate ways as we will make new friends and find new lives. And someday, we will all meet back together and tell each other about our current lives and have our high school family back together.

I would like to give a special thanks to all of my family and all of the teachers and how much they have worked together to make our education great and fun while making the Covid pandemic as least like a pandemic as possible.

Salutation Speech

by Teagen Larsen

WHS Class of 2021

September 2017. I woke up for my first day of high school and instantly had a multitude of questions go through my mind. What if there are mountains that feel too tall to climb? What if I’m going the wrong way? I am now 18-years-old preparing myself for my freshman year of college, and these questions are more prevalent than ever.

Class of 2021 hasn’t had a normal school experience since spring of 2020. We’ve been in and out of classrooms, zooms calls, and different learning strategies. I haven’t had the pressure of doing my homework until the night before it was due or preparing for a test because with COVID ruining our last two years of high school, there has been no room to be given the normalcy of homework or tests. With this being said, I am scared to fail at college this fall. People say that if I wasn’t ready, the opportunity wouldn’t be given to me, but what if I’m not ready? What if this is a mountain that feels too tall to climb? This is an opportunity that myself or my class shouldn’t let go of. Right now, graduating, moving away from home, and being alone with thousands of strangers seems like Mount Everest; it’ll go by in a flash just like high school did, and we can look back with even better memories because we won’t have our parents and we will make twice as many mistakes. When faced with a mountain, we have to be brave and know that it can only feel twice as good when we see the view from the top.

Another question that has been on my mind is, what if I’m going the wrong way? Choosing where we wanted to go or what we wanted to do was a task that felt hard for many of us starting high school. To graduate, we have to complete a High School and Beyond Plan. We started this task as freshmen and to even think that one day we might go to these colleges we dreamed of and even become doctors or engineers. Everyone always told us, “Oh, don’t worry, you have three years.” But now I wonder where did those three years go? We were told to dream big, and not one dream was too big to chase, but what if I am making a mistake with the road I have planned for myself? My whole family has gone to Washington State University, only 92 miles away. For years I have assumed being a Cougar was something in my future and that I would be a proud WSU alumnus one day. But one day, I decided that I didn’t want that future. I am making my own road--1,130 miles away--in Flagstaff, Arizona. Nothing is down there, I have never been there for a vacation, so why is that a place that sounds so appealing to me? Well, like I said before, there’s nothing down there. Life is an adventure, and from the moment when I saw the email from a college down in Flagstaff, I felt that adventure calling me.

June 4, 2021, I woke up this morning and still had a multitude of questions. But here is the good news. We don’t have to have the answers right now. We don’t have to have an idea of what we want to do or where we want to go. But if you have a gut feeling telling you to travel or to get that job you want or to go on after high school and continue to play sports, make that decision confidently because one day you’ll regret it if you don’t. Congratulations Class of 2021 and best of luck to you all.

Lessons one can learn from sports

by Shawn Evans

During my time at Waitsburg High School, sports have taught me many lessons. From sports, I have learned the value of failure, bonds created through teamwork, and making every moment count.

On both the micro and macro levels, sports teach us about the value of failure. Whether practicing or competing, athletic pursuits are built out of moments of triumph and moments of defeat, no matter what game you're playing. It is important to accept success with humility and to experience defeat with dignity.

Coming together as a team and as one unit is the most important element of success as you move towards a common goal. It's easy to be one person and do your own thing, but once you work together as a group, you can overcome and withstand any obstacles that come your way. You won't always win, but that's okay; being paralyzed by loss is not an option. The same holds for life. By being a part of a team, the loss is a bit easier, and the win is a bit sweeter. These past four years have been the best years of my life--from meeting new people and to creating memories that will last a lifetime-- all I can say is that I'm glad that I will never forget the bonds that I've created with my teammates.

Playing sports also gives you an opportunity to make every moment count. As a freshman walking the halls of this school and even on the athletic field, my peers always told me that it goes by quickly, so make the most of it while you can. I never listened to them until my senior year--especially as I started thinking about this speech, and I figured out I would graduate in two weeks. Guess I should have listened. Time is not your friend in high school. You only get four years of it, and then you're done forever. Be sure to take advantage of being a part of a team and enjoy every minute.

Since my freshman year, I have had the honor of playing varsity football and basketball. I have learned from my failures and found joy in our team's successes. I now have a bond with teammates and coaches that will last a lifetime. I appreciate the time I have spent lifting weights and working in the weight room to improve my skills. It was time well spent. However, above all, I am glad I wore the jerseys of the Waitsburg Cardinals and the DW Wolfpack. The lessons I learned will be lessons I take with me throughout my life.


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