Congratulations to senior graduates

William T. Robinson, Jr.

When there is so much bad news inundating our lives, it is refreshing to be able to applaud and celebrate the accomplishments of those graduating from high school or college. Seniors, you have proven that you possess the ability and resilience to follow through and achieve a goal. Your family, friends and the community have nothing but kudos and praise for this level of achievement and accomplishment in your lives. We wish you success and happiness in pursuing your future goals, whether continuing in higher education or just pursing a job.

The main purpose of a high school education was to prepare you for this phase in your life when you can be a productive and successful citizen. Hopefully you have attained the necessary skills to aide you in future endeavors awaiting you. For  many of you, high  school  graduation is a long awaited event  recognizing you as an adult and signifying that you should be treated  as one.  But  be mindful it is also  a   plateau  where you are expected to be responsible  and manifest  signs of  independence  using   sound  judgment  and  insight. This might be a  frightening and  overwhelming  time for  some, but this is the time to utilize all the  advice  and  lessons that  at one time you may have hated hearing. Some of you are anxiously awaiting going off to college and doing your own thing with little or no parental supervision. Truly this is an exciting time in your lives. But be careful and cautious of the many trials and tribulations that may be awaiting you. This is the time when so many young adults (feeling  the  air of  freedom) bite off more than they can  chew—sometimes resulting in an early return to their perspective hometown  from  college.  Hopefully, most of these graduate’s parents ‘got their backs’ and are willing to continue sacrificing and providing for them as long as they are trying to better themselves and work toward self fulfilling or promising careers.

Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, loved ones and friends are to be commended in helping many of these graduates reach this awesome stage in their lives. A special thanks should be given, especially  to  single  mothers acting as heads of the household. They are surely grateful  to  God for fulfilling their  often tear-filled prayers helping their children reach this point. In many situations,  it was  the  support of many mentors,  teachers,  ministers and  people in the community who aided the students in staying  focused and clear of  obstacles impeding their progress. Kudos to those who didn’t give up when the children may have fallen and made some mistakes. Instead they encouraged them to get up and continue on the journey.

Unfortunately, this celebratory time may be dimmed by some of our public school graduates finding that the education they received didn’t prepare them adequately. All too often many high school graduates are relegated to taking remedial classes in order to qualify for regular college courses necessary for a college degree. Thus, while normally it takes four years to complete college, it often becomes a five or six year ordeal. Those graduating should be a source of inspiration and hope for those who may not be serious or willingly receptive to learning. Several high school graduates are receiving scholarships and grants to aide them in the high cost of continuing their education.

Congratulations once again to graduating seniors both in high schools and colleges. You represent our future. Make us proud.