When the 252 graduates at Springville High School on Thursday moved the tassels from the left to the right sides of their mortar boardsthey were, as class president Molly Cox said, acknowledging it was time to go out into the world as adults to pursue their dreams.
"Although you had many of these opportunities, the world is just opening for you tonight," Principal Denis Poulsen said.Shaunalei Boyer told her classmates that they had been prepared and had achieved. "And now our journey is planned," Boyer said. "We are packed and ready to leave. Tonight marks the change. We've celebrated youth and now are set to run, to sail, to fly. We're not at an end at all, but at a commencement - a beginning."
Graduate Jennifer Gammell described the action of a poor boy who, while looking for work, saw a sign hanging outside a store saying "Boy Wanted." The boy proceeded to take the sign down, telling the proprietor he wouldn't need the sign any more; the boy would take the job.
"There are signs everywhere in our world that need to be taken down, providing we have the imagination, determination and skill to fulfill the responsibilities required," Gammell said. "Everywhere we go and every place we look, we see a sign with a message saying, `Wanted: the right person for the right job.' "
Leslie Davis said opportunity opens a two-way door to success or failure. "Being involved, we can say we know with opportunities taken comes the desire to succeed," Davis said. "Real success comes from perseverance and in doing our best. Thomas Edison developed 740 light bulbs before he finally got one that worked. . . . We are capable individuals who will make a difference today, and tomorrow."
With change comes growth, Christie Nelson said. "Learning, growing, changing . . . it is all so exciting," she said. "Education not only offers all of this, but it is a main catalyst in the development of students' ideas, beliefs and motivations."
J. Collin Allan, a member of the Nebo Board of Education, told graduates he hopes they one day will look back and reflect on some knowledge or insight given them by a teacher. Allan also remarked on the parents and relatives that were on hand to watch the students graduate.
"You've thought of them as mom and dad and grandparents," Allan said. "But there is another name for them: taxpayers. They are the ones who have made this education possible. . . . The roots of America's greatness came from people who wanted to be free and were willing to pay a price for it. Accept responsibility. Remember the freedom you enjoy, the education you've had that was paid for by someone else. Now with this commencement, you'll (have the opportunity to) begin to pay that back."
During the commencement ceremony a vocal solo was performed by Allison Ford, and Amy and Andrea Frischknecht performed a violin and piano duet. The Senior Ensemble performed "Would You" by Buryl Red.
Students graduating from Springville High have received a combined total of more than $200,000 in scholarships and financial aid to help them in pursuing further education.