With messages urging them to be happy with themselves, take advantage of their opportunities, and to always remain a family, the members of Emmetsburg High School's Class of 2014 received their diplomas in Commencement ceremonies Sunday afternoon.
Senior Class President Kendall Deitering served as Mistress of Ceremonies for the ceremony, and recapped the history of the class, from their start as a group at the Little Red school to their transition to West Elementary and the old Middle School and then into the new Middle School and finally, High School.
"We've been there for each other all along the way, through the triumph and the tragedy,"?Deitering told the audience. "I know there's not a single person in the class of 2014 who would not offer comfort to another member of this class, Because, you see, around here, we don't look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things because we're curious, and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths."
IT’S?OFFICIAL!?- With the turning of their tassels, Emmetsburg High School’s Class of 2014 broke out the silly string and confetti to complete its Commencement Exercises Sunday afternoon. A total of 64 seniors received their diplomas to begin a new adventure in their lives. -- Dan Voigt photo
Following two selections by the EHS?Concert Choir, Deitering introduced Class Salutatorian, Brittany Poeppe.
"We all change along the way,"?Poeppe noted in her remarks. "As we go through school, we change, but we will never forget our school years, and our time in high school."
Poeppe continued, "We are a class that sticks together, like a family, and we always will be."
Class Valedictorian Steven Huang welcomed everyone to the ceremonies, especially the "overemotional parents," which drew a hearty chuckle from the crowd.
"I am honored to be standing here before you to speak,"?Huang noted. "I would like to take this opportunity to say 'thank you' to the academic teachers, coaches and everyone, because without you, I wouldn't be here."
Huang took a moment to remember classmate Wyatt Sinning, who passed in 2013, and also remembered instructor Ronn Menneke, who passed in 2012.
"We are all blessed by all of the opportunities that are afforded to all students in this class,"?Huang said. "I?have learned that you don't have to be charismatic, athletic, or smart to succeed. I'm fortunate to have what I have because I?live in a nation where anything and everything is possible...I would tell you all to take advantage of your opportunities - believe in your goals, believe in your dreams and believe in yourself."
Diplomas were then awarded by school board members Kim Campbell, Rick Bird and Rick Brennan to conclude the Commencement Exercises for the Class of 2014.