Graduation Speech: Live Life to the Fullest

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I would like to begin this evening by welcoming all of my classmates, staff, parents and guardians, the school board and superintendent, friends, and relatives to the commencement of the class of 2012.

Commencement is a critical juncture in our lives; it is a momentous occasion where we believe we are about to start anew. However, graduation is the bittersweet moment where the forces of past and future are simultaneously acting on us. Consequently, the past is not dead. Alfred, Lord Tennyson, suggests that our past experiences will be with us forever as he states, " [we] are a part of all that [we] have met; yet all experience is an arch where through gleams that untraveled world." That is why graduation, similar to other turning points in our lives, possesses two halves, which accentuate each other. We are looking forward, but the "arch" of experience beckons us to remember, value, and learn from our past experiences. Thus, I feel that in order to appreciate commencement fully, we must remember our own past, and in particular, the last four years:

For we are leaving many of ...

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