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Graduation is an exciting new beginning

Editor’s Note: Today, The Daily Leader continues publication of area high school valedictorian and salutatorian graduation speeches. The following address is from Wesson Attendance Center Salutatorian Brandon Nettles.

 It is an honor to speak on behalf of Wesson Attendance Center’s class of 2013. I would like to thank all the family and friends of our class for attending tonight and showing support for all the graduates.

Winston Churchill once said, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” I believe that our class has proved this quote to be true.

We, as a class, have gone through a lot together, both good and bad. Sometimes we might have felt discouraged while other times we have felt inspired, but even when our happiness didn’t last and we felt troubled or distressed, we showed conviction and persevered.

As our class begins the next chapter of our lives, we will always remember the experiences we have gone through at Wesson. Everyone can remember their first day of school at Wesson, whether it was in kindergarten, elementary or high school. We all had a slight nervous look in our eyes and hesitancy in our step. But the things that kept us going then are what drive us forward now, an excitement for the future and for the unknown.

I began my first year of Wesson Attendance Center in the fourth grade. I remember how everything seemed so foreign and new to me. I did not know anyone at Wesson, and I had to adapt to completely new teachers and new friends.

But as the years have passed, I have come to realize how much moving to Wesson has really helped me, and I thank God for guiding me through that time in my life.

I cannot imagine my life without the friends I have made or the teachers who have taught me. The majority of us have grown up together and seen each other change and mature, and we have become closer because of it.

Some people in our class have been looking forward to this day for years, while others might still be clinging to our past experiences, but all of us recognize graduation as a necessary stepping stone for the future.

Although graduation can be a stressful ending, it is more importantly an exciting new beginning. Many of us will now go our separate ways to different universities and community colleges, but all of us go prepared to accomplish our goals.

Some of us have known what we wanted to do after high school or college the first time we were asked; some of us probably would not know if you asked us right now. Yet, we all have one thing in common; we all strive to demonstrate what we have learned and what we are capable of.

Once again, I would like to thank all the family and friends who have shown support to all of us, not only tonight, but throughout the years we have been at Wesson. I want to thank my own family for their continuous encouragement and for all the advice they have given me.

I would also like to thank God for allowing us all to make it to this point.

I wish my classmates the very best of luck, but I have no doubt that our class will do great in whatever we decide to do. I have truly enjoyed every minute I have spent with you, and I wish you all the best.