WARSAW — On Friday, June 3, close to 500 students crossed the stage, accepted their diplomas and became Warsaw Community High School graduates. The 2016 graduation ceremony was held in the Tiger Den of Warsaw Community High School at 7 p.m.
The ceremony started with welcome introductions by Principal Troy Akers and Neema Patel, student body president.
“To the class of 2016, I wanted to convey a very important message. As we all advance in our journey, never get comfortable with where you are,” said Patel. “I challenge the class of 2016 to go out and do something even greater, to make a difference.”
Following Patel’s speech, there was a moment of silence for Sarah Vlot, Korbin Foster and Kaleb Lampkin, class members who had died. Steven Vlot, William Wells and Skyler Lampkin each honored their memories by lighting a candle and accepting an honorary diploma for the classmates.
Lucas Cone, class salutatorian, took to the stage next to give his speech.
“I encourage all of you to take some time to reflect on the last four years, or perhaps the last 18 years, to thank those who have led you to this point in life,” said Cone.
After Cone’s speech, the Festival Choir, directed by Thomas Hall, performed “When I Grow Up.” Noah Scott then gave the commencement address.
“Life isn’t like a standardized test,” said Scott. “You have to take risks. You have to live your life like you want to. Don’t fit to a mold, be different.”
The Warsaw Community High School Wind Ensemble then performed “Slava.” Ethan Joseph Cook, valedictorian, gave the last of the student speeches during the ceremony.
“Up until now, for the most part, all of the big decisions have been made for us,” said Cook. “But now as we transition to this stage in our life, we have the ability to make our own decisions.”
After all the speeches were completed, the names of each graduating senior was announced as they crossed the stage and accepted their diploma. Then, as a class, they all participated in the ceremonial turning of the tassels.