With Principal Dr. Dana Giles and Board of Education member Dr. Jaha Howard leading the way, the Pebblebrook Class of 2020 proceeded onto the field at Cantrell Stadium for their commencement ceremony.
“This day is about you,” said Assistant Principal Deanna Munlin, welcoming the graduates, “and what you’ve achieved through hard work, determination, and moments of creative inspiration. Graduation is a time to imagine your future and the time to come.”
“It took us so long to get here, but we finally made it,” agreed Salutatorian Cameron Brown. “We have arrived and this is our moment. Be present in this moment that was made for you.”
“We are the chosen generation,” Valedictorian Tracy Dumakor told her classmates. “As we take flight into our next chapter,” she said, “we will change the narrative wherever we find ourselves. The world will be a better place because of us,” she concluded to applause and approving cheers.
Dr. Giles, affectionately known to her students as “Dr. G.,” admonished her captive audience to “not ignore the leak.” A leak, she taught, is where problems begin to reveal themselves. And ignoring the leaks in life leads to deeper problems.
“Leaking looks like losing hope,” she said. “So no matter what happens, no matter what comes your way, Class of 2020, don’t you dare leak,” she said authoritatively.
Before certifying the graduation, which allows the diplomas to be presented, Dr. Howard gave a small bit of advice to the seniors. Recalling a time when he was caught in a severe downpour and needed the emergency lights on the car ahead of him to find his way, Dr. Howard encouraged the graduates to be a beacon for others.
“Pebblebrook Class of 2020,” he said, “I challenge you to be light. Be the person you needed when your life was at risk and you didn’t know how things were going to turn out. Others are depending on you to be the light for them. Choose to be light.”
Congratulations Pebblebrook Falcons Class of 2020! Don’t leak and remember to be light. We are so proud of you!