An estimated 5,000 people were in attendance Saturday morning as Carson High School celebrated the Class of 2018.
More than 400 seniors walked across the stage to accept their diplomas as a successful four years of high school came to an end.
“We are going to miss each and every one of you,” said principal Tasha Fuson. “You have done well at Carson High ... Class of 2018, you make us proud.”
The graduation centered around life lessons that the students learned in school as well as what to remember for the future.
Co-valedictorian Nicole Van Geel talked about how the students should remember to go through life putting their all into everything they do.
“We can’t approach the things we care about with a half-hearted mindset, we weren’t placed on this earth to just exist,” Van Geel said. “It is our job to go whole heart for it. Class of 2018 you’ve got to go whole heart, so darling go with your whole heart.”
Fuson told the students that one of the biggest things she has learned in life is that caution isn’t always the right option.
“I have found nothing in life is worthwhile unless you take risks,” Fuson said. “You will fail at some point at life, accept it... Never be discouraged, never look back and give it all you got because if you are going to fall, fall forward not backward.”
Jumpstart Valedictorian Alexa Haight also talked about how all the students would be forever connected due to their strength and unity with each other through several tragedies that occurred over the last year in the CHS community.
“You all made an impact in my life and without my experiences with you all, I would not be the person I am today,” said Haight. “You’ve taught me perseverance. This past year especially Carson High has experienced many serious hardships and countless students and staff members were affected by some truly horrible tragedies.”
“In those times, however, we as a student body learned to be persistent, to band together with fellow students and the rest of the community to find strength in each other and to keep pushing on, no matter how impossible that seemed at the time. So life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it is about learning to dance in the rain and that is what we did.”
But in the end, it was about reminiscing on the past and their shared growth. Senior class president Melanie Proctor took the audience through a timeline from freshman to senior year.
“What do you say to a group of people who took the same journey with you?” said Proctor. “What do you say to the group who you grew up with over the last four years?”
But she expressed what she believed was the most important take away from their journey.
“High school is a time for growth and a chance to make the lives of those in school and in the community better,” Proctor said.
The 460 graduates were adorned with honors for academics, a fine arts diploma, honor societies, thespian society and more. There were also 15 students from the Jumpstart program who received an Associate’s Degree from Western Nevada College in addition to their high school diplomas.
“Here we are, the moment we have all been waiting for, for the last four years,” said Van Geel. “What we have accomplished here is truly amazing.”