For all the talk of academic accomplishments, Braden River High School graduation speaker Carol Rothenberger captured the essence of how far she and her classmates had come since they walked into Braden River as freshmen in 2013.
“We’ve come a long way since freshmen year. I mean, just think about what you looked like,” Rothenberger told her classmates. “And look at you now.”
The roughly 500 seniors who had been freshmen in the fall of 2013 were recognized Thursday not just for growing into the young men and women crossing the stage who looked far different from their freshmen selves. Assistant Principal Monica DeLesline read a series of accomplishments, and students stood when she read an accomplishment they had achieved. By the end, every graduating senior was standing.
Student speaker Jaylen Gonzalez reminded his classmates of the “butterfly effect,” where the flap of a butterfly’s wings can change the weather on the other side of the world.
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“Shake the earth. You’ve been given the power to do so,” Gonzalez said. “Now act like it.”
BRADEN RIVER HIGH SCHOOL
Graduating class: 10th graduating class
Speakers: Principal Jennifer Gilray; students Raeann Folds, Carol Rothenberger and Jaylen Gonzalez
Interesting fact: Students wore robes corresponding with the academy they studied in. As the only “Wall-to-wall” academy school in the district, Braden River students choose a focus for their four years. The academies are: Arts and Communications Technology, Business and International Studies, Engineering Design and Leadership, and the Science Technology and Health Academy.
Shining moment: When talking about what sets Braden River apart, Rothenberger mentioned Principal Gilray’s propensity for removing her heels and running across the lawn.
Best quote: “A butterfly that never leaves the ground is a butterfly that never took a chance to beat its wings,” Gonzalez said.