Graduation Speech: Don't Forget Where You Came From

1119 words - 4 pages

Good afternoon, I would like to begin by thanking the staff for the privilege of speaking before you on this bittersweet day. It seems like this past year has been a jumble of excitement, reminiscence of the past and uncertainty for the future. After dreaming about graduating since we jumped off the bus on the first day of kindergarten, it's finally here.

With the years of number two pencils, group projects and final bells behind us, we find ourselves on the threshold of our future. Yet, it's difficult not to timidly glance back at our past and wonder if we are prepared for what lies ahead. Are we ready to face that thing called reality which our parents and teachers have constantly warned us about? I was unsure if I would be prepared to face this world which exists beyond the doors of high school until a recent incident changed my mind. It forced me to put all of my accumulated knowledge from high school to the test in order to survive. I wish I could say this experience happened to me when I was a silly freshman; unfortunately it was only a few months ago. It began with a routine trip to the high school to pick up my brother from a basketball game one cold, January evening. I arrived to find the game was long over, although at the time I didn't know that he had already gotten a ride home. I went looking for him, taking a shortcut from the gym through the courtyard. As I stepped into the frigid air, the door quickly clicked shut behind me. I strode briskly across the courtyard to the double doors in the old commons, only to find they wouldn't budge. Remaining calm, I tried the doors next to them and the gym doors; they were also locked. My heart began to race as I tried every door and gate in that courtyard, only to find I was trapped! There was no one in the gym as I had passed the janitor on my way in. Despite this, I began frantically kicking the door and screaming like a maniac for someone, anyone. I stood in the middle of my new cage nervously laughing out loud at the predicament I now found myself in. Desperate thoughts led me to considerations of scaling the walls or breaking a window. Even though I had only been in the frosty air a few minutes, I was already shivering. And then, I let a frightening thought cross my mind: what if I have to stay in here all night? I could freeze to death. I could just see the headline in the Record: "Student's Stupidity Leads to Severe Case of Hypothermia." New determination filled my numb body, and I turned instead to the collected knowledge from my years in this very building which now trapped me. It was as if the high school was mocking me, yelling, "I hope you listened in all your classes, because now you need that information in order to save yourself." Forget finals, this was my final test of high school. Yet, I suddenly wasn't scared anymore as I thought of all the teachers who imparted lasting knowledge on me.

Thanks to Mr. Fulton, I knew I should start jogging around to keep my body...

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