CHARLOTTE – Tracey Harrill encouraged graduating seniors that when they feel nervous about new challenges to think back to how they felt when they arrived at Providence High School four years ago.
The principal reminded them of that uncertainty they felt finding their way around such a large school and the anxiety related to where they would sit and who they would eat with at lunch.
“See how much you’ve learned since then?” Harrill said. “I encourage you to let that be an example for the rest of your life. You might have some anxiety about leaving Providence and growing up. Some of you will move away from home. Some of you will go to new experiences, new jobs and new sets of friends but with the skills you learned, you are ready and you can do a great job.”
Providence High recognized more than 450 graduates June 12 at Bojangles’ Coliseum.
About 83% of the class will attend four-year colleges or universities, while 11% will enroll at community college and 6% will go on to the military or employment. The Class of 2019 earned 200 scholarships, totaling $10.2 million.
They have committed to attend 87 colleges in 26 state and three countries.
“Considering this is the last time all of us will be together, it seems fitting to use this time to reminisce on some of the memories we shared,” Valedictorian Jeffrey Harding said.
Harding’s memories were tongue-in-cheek, such as witnessing a world record 100-meter dash during halftime of a football game or surviving moldy conditions.
“But after our challenging and inspiring years at Providence perhaps the most important thing we learned is that car insurance is worth our money,” he said.
Years from now, Harding said, graduates won’t remember studying or grades, but the people and moments shared with them.
Salutatorian Margaret Wu used the words of tennis player Serena Williams and rapper/designer Kanye West to inspire her classmates. Her message: Life almost always gives us a second chance – it’s called tomorrow. Follow your futures.