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Graduation is 'The End of the Beginning', South Senior Tells Class

Senior Somers Brush was one of two students selected to give a commencment speech to the 2012 graduating class for Grosse Pointe South High School Thursday night. Graduation marks the end of many things, but future abounds, she told fellow graduates.

By Somers Brush
Class of 2012

"Today is the threshold of a new era in all of our lives. In keeping with our homecoming theme of the Mayan calendar, this day, graduation, is often called the end of the beginning.

It is essentially the end of our childhood. The end of being students of the Grosse Pointe Public School District. The end of high school. For me, this day is the beginning of the end of spending every waking moment with the same five girls. For all of us, it is the end of seven hour school days with seven classes, of seeing the same 1,669 peers every day, of trying so hard to get to school early to get a Boulevard spot, and the relief once you finally got an S-lot pass. The end of the School Store’s cookies, of sneaking over to Farms during tutorial to get a chocolate croissant, and of eating lunch on this very front lawn, soaking up the sun. The end of excitedly opening the Tower every Wednesday, of running over to Christ Church every Thursday for Pizza Lunch. of being proud to be in South’s choir, or just being proud to be friends with someone who is in South’s choir. The end of painting the rock, of Friday night football games, of waving hello to Dr. Outlaw in the hallways.

Today marks the end of high school homecomings, proms, Sadies, and Glowouts, of having Brian Hall as our class president, of chatting with Mar in between classes. The end of hearing stories about Mr. Briske’s sociology class, of being a Senior in high school, and of being in a grade. The end of being in the class of 2012. The end of being a Blue Devil.

But, as I said, it is just the beginning.

And I think I can speak for all of us when I say that it’s weird that this has only been the beginning. That these past 18 years will probably represent less than one fifth of our lives, and these past four years, only one twentieth. Because we have already experienced so much. Here are a few examples:

Failures.  Our first three Homecomings could be labeled as just that, although we tried our hardest. And there have been plenty of heartbreakers in sports throughout the years.

Success. We won the Sprit Jug this year, against all odds. Amazing artists have come to the surface through Art Fest, and have been given well-deserved accolades. Our sports teams have encountered enormous success—like the girls’ hockey, track and tennis teams winning their state championships, and the boys’ hockey and girls’ basketball teams making it to their state finals.

Massive stress. Tests, quizzes, the ACT, college applications, AP tests. The list goes on and on. Some of us have even become familiar with the all-nighter, trying to finish our English papers at the last minute. And the inevitable procrastination never helped.

Rejection. Rejection from possible Homecoming dates, unrequited love interests, groups of friends, National Honor Society, teams, colleges. Let’s face it. We have all experienced some form of it or another, unfortunately.

Acceptance. Acceptance of religion, beliefs, politics, ethnicities, sexual orientation. Total acceptance of who we are.

And finally—most importantly—pride. Pride for our school, our friends, our teams, our clubs, our class.

Although this day may be sad for many of us because of what we are leaving behind, we must remember what we have to look forward to."

Rosanne Triano June 15, 2012 at 11:03 PM
What a wonderful speech, Somers!

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