Summerland Secondary School’s 110 Grade 12 students received their high school diplomas on Friday.
The graduation ceremony was held at the Summerland Arena.
Valedictorians Faith Fraser and Ben Geertz reflected on their time growing up in Summerland and thanked the community for support over the years.
“There was rarely a time when the city of Summerland let down the students that resided here,” Geertz said.
The two thanked the teachers, the community and their parents for their help in completing their public school education.
They also spoke of the tensions they and other graduates are feeling as they will begin life after high school.
“The worry never goes away,” Fraser said, “but you begin to realize that everyone else is also having a midlife crisis way before the point of midlife.”
“Do not fear the future,” Geertz added. “Things coming ahead are coming faster than a social movement on Twitter.”
“We are now at the final point,” Fraser said. “We are the graduation class of 2019. Congrats, everybody.”
In addition to their high school diplomas, students also received bursaries from numerous community organizations as well as university entrance scholarships.
Some of the scholarships were worth tens of thousands of dollars.
The Verrier Award, the most prestigious award given at the school, was presented to Geertz and Ivy Hiebert.
Normally, the award is given to only one graduating student.
Both students excelled academically and have also been involved in other activities through the school and in the community.
Helena Mott, last year’s Verrier Award winner, described the two as strong leaders.
“I wish you both great success as you leave this phase in your life behind and turn to discover and dominate new horizons,” she said.
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