CHARLOTTE – David LeGrand could think of no better way to describe the Class of 2019 than the title of Robert Schuller’s book, “Tough Times Don’t Last, But Tough People Do.”
The Independence High School principal reminded the nearly 500 graduates gathered for commencement on June 8 at Bojangles’ Coliseum how they survived two hurricanes, an ice storm with widespread outages and some personal challenges.
“We experience what happens in the world around us,” LeGrand said. “We have information and news at our fingertips the moment it happens, but the things that are designed to bring us closer together are tearing us apart. The real challenge is how are we support and guide our students through the many unexplained events that rocked our world.”
Graduates have fared well so far, including earning more than $1.2 million in scholarships and giving back to the community and beyond in many ways through service.
“Class of 2019, you will continue to experience challenges that will push you to your limits, but remember this: When there is no struggle, there is no strength,” LeGrand said. “We need this generation’s creativity and strength to solve the issues that the world faces.”
Katherine French, who was named class salutatorian, said she leaves Independence High School with three takeaways: mistakes don’t define you, there’s power in collaboration and do not settle.
“Never stop creating until you are satisfied with the world around you,” she told classmates.