Though the sky was gray, the mood wasn’t Saturday morning as Carson High School celebrated its 2017 graduates.
Surrounded by friends, family and loved ones, more than 500 students walked across the stage to accept their diplomas.
“It is incredible we can all come together today to graduate,” said valedictorian Anna Glenn.
Glenn started the ceremony talking about the times shared between the graduates.
“Freshman year we never would have anticipated the challenges, heartbreak and memories we shared,” Glenn said. “I for one wouldn’t trade those experiences I’ve had for anything and I hope you all can say the same.”
Those experiences were beneficial for many of the graduates. Principal Tasha Fuson shared with the audience some of the accomplishments the graduates had.
The Class of 2017 received more than $4.2 million in scholarships; three were named National Merit finalists, two were Presidential Scholarship finalists; they had students in all-state band, orchestra and soccer; Scholastic Art and Writing competitors; honors in FBLA, Speech and Debate, HOSA; state wrestling champions and more.
“It would take me hours and hours and hours to share all the accomplishments of this class,” Fuson said.
A common theme among the speakers was change and the impact the students could make post-graduation.
“We have the opportunity to go forward to go and change the world in our own individual way,” said senior class president Alyssa Woodward.
She also spoke to her class about the need to embrace failure in order to achieve success.
“To find success, don’t be afraid to swim with the sharks,” Woodward said.
Fuson also spoke to the students, telling them the decisions and actions they make in life will have an impact. She used the metaphor of the butterfly wings flapping that can cause a tsunami across the world.
“Two rules to live by: everyone counts and everything counts,” Fuson said. “What you do matters, be a butterfly, be a beautiful butterfly.”
At the end, graduation caps and beach balls filled the air as the grads turned their tassels from right to left and filed out of the football stadium to start their new chapter.