Lakewood High School seniors - 318 of them - marched across the stage to receive their high school diplomas on Sunday, June 3, in the Civic Auditorium full of their family, friends and teachers. Graduates received their diplomas from Board of Education President Edward Favre along with congratulations from Superintendent Jeff Patterson and LHS Principal Keith Ahearn.
Class Valedictorian Veronica Lee (pictured right) and student-selected speakers Donia Amra and Madison Lewellyn gave speeches prior to the awarding of diplomas.
In her speech, "The Importance of Showing Up," Veronica talked about just that. She addressed how a big part of life is showing up and making choices day in and day out - even the tough ones. "It is in these moments of uncertainty that our character is revealed," she said.
Donia Amra chose to focus on acceptance in her speech, "Accepting the Challenge of Acceptance." She shared with her classmates her story of coming to the United States with her family two years ago and being afraid and uncertain of whether she would be accepted in her new home. She shared her feeling of relief upon walking in her first class and realizing she was not alone. "Lakewood has taught me that diversity
and being accepted are important for each and every one of us because it manifests
itself in building a great community and reputation," she told her peers.
Madison Lewellyn chose to use the four years of construction disruption as a symbolic parallel of her class's journey over four years. "As seniors, we have become phoenixes rising from the debris, the demolition—rebirthing from the ashes of the past and assuming flight upon the future," she said.
During the ceremony, Ahearn recognized several special student groups including those wearing National Honor Society stoles, French Honor Society ribbons, Career Technical Honor Society medals, the eight students joining the military and the 40 students wearing Hawthorne Medals for finishing their high school careers with a 4.0 GPA or better.
The ceremony concluded with senior members of the Symphonic Mixed Choir singing "The Lord Bless You and Keep You" and then the entire class joining in to sing the LHS Alma Mater.
Congratulations to the Class of 2018 graduates!