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Class Of 2016 Begins New Chapter In Life

By Staff | May 24, 2016

SENIOR?SELFIE - Commencement exercises for Emmetsburg High School’s Class of 2016 were conducted Sunday afternoon. Senior Class member Spencer Bird, at left, grabbed the opportunity to grab a “selfie” photo of himself and his fellow graduates after they had received their diplomas, much to the delight of the audience. The 57 members of the Class of 2016 obliged their classmate with waves as he took the priceless memory photo. -- Dan Voigt photo

With the turning of tassels on Sunday afternoon, 57 members of the Class of 2016 of Emmetsburg High School embarked on a new chapter in their lives in front of family, friends and classmates.

The graduates entered the gymnasium to the traditional ‘Pomp and Circumstance’, performed by the EHS Concert Band. After a welcome by High School Principal Mike Embrock, the senior video, created by class of 2016 member Laura Moser was presented to the crowd.

Following the video, Embrock introduced Kaity Mason, President of the Class of 2016, who served as the Master of Ceremonies for the ceremonies. Reflecting on the class motto, “Our lives are before us, our past is behind us, but our memories are forever with us,” Mason took her classmates and the audience on a memory walk through their years in school, including moving into a new building in Middle School. Being in Middle School, we were always very scared of the high schoolers, never thinking that one day we would become one of them. But in high school, we created so many memories together.”

Mason concluded with these words, “We will always have our memories to hold on to and to cherish forever,” before thanking parents, teachers, administrators custodians and staff and the community for support of the activities of the students.

Following two selections by the EHS Concert Choir, under the direction of Mr. Luke Miller, Mason introduced Class Salutatorian, Bennetta Greene, who also thanked the teachers, administration and staff of Emmetsburg for their efforts in helping the Class of 2016 succeed. Greene also reminded her classmates of the words of Eleanor Roosevelt, “Life must be lived and curiosity kept alive. One must never, for any reason, turn his back of life.”

Greene concluded, “I wish you all great success in your endeavors, and thank you.”

Next, Mason introduced the Valedictorian of the Class of 2016, Emily Schmidt.

Schmidt reflected on how she moved back to Emmetsburg from California to conclude her final three years of high school and how she found a home in the vocal music room when she entered EHS.

“I knew there was an amazing show choir, and I knew I wanted to be a part of that group,” Schmidt recalled, “I walked into the vocal room and stared. You could literally see the dedication. Between the plaques, the trophies and the ribbons and the giant motivational banner and even some left over glitter on the floor, it was all there. I can remember when Mr. Fog walked into the room, wearing an E-Hawk Football hat. He had me sing a few scales, looked at me and said, ‘Oh yeah!’ I knew then that the vocal room would be my home for the next three years.”

Schmidt closed her remarks with a quote from the movie, “Legally Blonde”. “It is with passion, courage and conviction and strong sense of self, that we take our next steps into the world. Remembering that first impressions are not always correct, we must always have faith in people. And, most importantly, we must have faith in ourselves. Congratulations, Class of 2016 WE DID IT!”

Emmetsburg Community Schools Superintendent Amanda Schmidt, along with School Board members Rick Bird and Kim Campbell then awarded the diplomas to the Class of 2016 and after being instructed to turn their tassels by Principal Mike Embrock, the Class of 2016 joined the world as graduates, tossing hats into the air amid cheers and applause.