Delavan-Darien High School graduates lauded for community work
Anxiously waiting their opportunity, the 2014 graduates of Delavan-Darien High School tried their best to calm their nerves before they crossed their high school stage one last time.
While happy to continue their new journey, students were sad to see this time with life-long friends end.
“We've all known each other our entire lives,” said Katherine Riley. “So it's going to be weird to wake up and not see the same faces anymore.”
Student speaker and National Honor Society member Eli Nelson said it has been a “long time coming,” as he prepares to head to UW-La Crosse in the fall.
The hard goodbye
As excited as the students were to graduate, some couldn't help but have a little bit of anxiety when thinking about what comes next.
“I'll be going to UW-Superior in the fall, followed by the Air Force,” said Devin Salas. “But it's still pretty scary because at least here you knew what to expect. Out there you have no idea.”
“Nursing school is my future,” said Katherine Riley, who will be heading to Edgewood in the fall. “I am really hoping to get a job as a CNA at the UW hospital. It's sad to say goodbye to all of my friends from home, but I'm really looking forward to what's next.”
“This fall I'll be attending UW-La Crosse,” said Neil Truckenbrod “I'll be focusing on IT programming, so that's going to be a great change of pace.”
Although their time at DDHS has come to an end, students leave with more opportunity then they might have imagined.
This year's graduating class ended up logging more than 7,000 hours in community service, doing it not for a reward, but simply to help the Delavan-Darien community. More than 50 percent of the class was successful in maintaining a 3.0 or higher GPA, while 37 of the graduates succeeded in maintaining a GPA of 3.75 or higher to finish with high honors. In addition, a new school record was hit as 37 graduates made names for themselves as Wisconsin covenant scholars, while another student was named a Herb Kohl Foundation Student Excellence Scholar, a rare distinction.
“They leave us a legacy of academic achievement, of extracurricular and athletic accomplishments, and of significant community service.” said Principal Mark Schmitt as he began his welcome speech.
“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style," Schmitt added.