Valedictorians Nicole Hawe and Mitchell Zorn drew giggles from their fellow classmates with their speech at the 2012 graduation ceremony.

Nakusp Valedictorian Address

Nicole Hawe and Mitchell Zorn sum up the Class of 2012

Good afternoon honourable board members, special guests, caring teachers, loving parents, family and friends.

Thank you for joining us today to celebrate our 2012 graduation. We were a little apprehensive taking on this task because last year’s toga party with champagne was a hard act to follow, but we gave it our best shot.

As the pages have turned in this uncertain novel of our young lives, we are always inspired by this prologue that is and was our educational career.

From the start we were an eager group of individuals with a willingness to learn, most of the time, and the characters we played, played a lead role on the stage of primary education.

Between being Yu-Gi-Oh masters, young Bobby Orr wannabes, artists, or just straight up pretending we were Pokémon, we spent the majority of our time occupying the terrestrial realms of our classes. These classes were led by a vast number of different yet incredibly talented teachers with a readiness to make us smart, and for the most part they did, for the most part…

And the pages continued to turn, and the bond between this group of students (Class of 2012) grew stronger.

We stepped onto the new turf known as Nakusp Elementary School, ready to make our mark. At this time in our lives, major conflicts consisted of who could run the fastest, and almost every pain could be fixed with a Band-Aid.

The memories created in these years will be carried with us forever. From the most competitive four square games ever played, to the epic Silver Lake trip. It was during these years that everyone began to find themselves; some decided that recess and lunch were their favourite time of the day, whilst others discovered their thirst for knowledge.

Some briefly found their delinquent side in grade 7, when they catapulted approximately 20 pencils into the ceiling of Ms. Jenkins class room, but for the most part we contained ourselves.

Silver Lake will never be forgotten. We survived savage rats, powdered potatoes, someone in a bear suit, and even witnessed Carla and Connie bust a few moves! Despite the long bumpy bus ride, awful food, and sketchy cabins, it brought us even closer together, and prepared us for the big jump across the street, into our high school careers.

Now this high school chapter of the story is starting to fall to a close, and after the dust settles and the Monday mornings, the Mr. Cross stories, and lunchtime runs to Cutrite come to an end, or after being pulled back into shop classes by Mr. B, or every P.E. class that may have gotten just a little too out of control starts to dwindle, we know that we must move on to the next chapter of our lives. But, we also know the memories we’ve endured will occupy our minds forever.

Like every successful story, we had incredible editors: our teachers and parents, who spent countless hours moulding us into who we are today. Teachers, some days I’m not sure how you manage to get up and come to work. You have to deal with the blank looks, obnoxious interruptions, and absolutely obscure questions like when a certain student asked if we left enough bottles of pop outside and it evaporated, would it rain pop? Parents, your unconditional love, and constant support have not gone unnoticed, and won’t ever be forgotten. Your perseverance through the kinndy tantrums, the loud all-nighters, the hormonal outbursts, and the pre-exam freak-outs has been much appreciated. We love you.

As this array of talented protagonists prepares to experience the much anticipated chapter titled “The Real World,” we are aware of the many challenges and obstacles that we will have to overcome. When a vine meets a wall does it stop growing? No, it does the unthinkable, it defies gravity, and it climbs the wall. Fellow Grads, each one of us will come face to face with a wall in our lives, and we are asking each of us to climb this wall, because it will only make us stronger.

Audience, sitting before you is a group with integrity, individuality, grit and determination. I know that success is inevitable.

We stand here today with one simple message, a thank you, for everything you, our parents and teachers have done, and to our fellow grads; we could not have asked for a better group of people to share our last 13 years with. So, in the wise words of Joe Dirt, “Life’s a garden, dig it.”

Today marks the definitive end of a chapter, and thus the beginning of another. We must remember that this next chapter has not yet been written, and we are the ones who will decide whether or not the story of our lives will be the next best seller.

Thank you.


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