Graduation 2016 — 'Being part of the school in general has just been awesome'
To some school seems like an eternity.
To others, especially during Grad Year, those 12 years go by so quick.
This weekend in Nelson and Salmo, students will receive their diplomas before heading out into the real world as L.V. Rogers and Salmo Secondary host ceremonies to salute the Grad Class of 2016.
As the young high school graduates prepare to enter the next phase of their lives The Nelson Daily caught up with a few of Valedictorians to see what they have planned for the future.
Micah May will address the audience as the LVR Valedictorian during ceremonies Friday at the NDCC Arena.
Meanwhile, Saturday, in Salmo Si Woods and Sydney Demaid will be representing their class at Salmo Secondary School graduation ceremony.
The Nelson Daily asked the grads about the direction they are heading in, what growing up in the area has done for them, and what they will be carrying with them as they move forward into the next phase of their lives.
What are your plans following graduation? Will you be sticking around the region or moving on to pursue other interests in a different city?
Micah: I’ll be moving on to other interests and doing firefighting based out of Balfour. In September I’m going to be going up to Prince George to attend University at UNBC where I’ll be starting the Environmental Engineering Program up there and seeing how I like that.
Si: I’m not completely sure yet but I’ll be doing firefighting this summer to save some money up. And then either traveling or going to Selkirk to start my electrical or maybe going to UBCO to do biology. I have a couple options but don’t know what I’m doing yet.
Sydney: My plan is to go to college in Nelson at Selkirk so I can learn, get more experience and move back here to open a shop that’s all about making people feel better about themselves. Personal stylist basically; hair style, aesthetics, clothing, makeup, photography, artwork— it’s just about making people feel good about themselves.
What has growing up in the Kootenays taught you? What does this area mean to you and what will you be carrying with you?
Micah: I’ve grown up all my life in Nelson, I live out in Bonnington and have lived there all my life. I think growing up in Nelson has given me an appreciation of having a diverse skillset and having broad interests and skills. I’ve been able to participate in team sports and many outdoor activities given the location and culture of Nelson. It’s an awesome arts town as well, so I’ve been able to participate in some of those things like the youth choir. I’m going to take that skillset into UNBC and as I travel and work and things like that I’ll be using those skills that I gleaned from the diversity of activities I’ve done in Nelson.
Si: I moved to Salmo in Grade 8; it’s an awesome little town. I’ve always been able to find a job and enjoy cool experiences. I’ve tried some blacksmithing through the school, worked at a café, and worked for the village in Salmo. There’s just lots of cool people here that will help you out with anything you need really.
Sydney: Actually I moved to Salmo three years ago, and I have to say it’s a lot better than where I came from. I lived in Fort St. John for about 12 years, and I was bullied constantly. It was a very awful and harsh environment. Moving down here, I absolutely adore it. Everyone is really supportive and it’s just a fantastic place to be.
What’s your best memory form your last year of high school?
Micah: I was fortunate enough to take 12 Grade 10 guys out to Camp Koolaree and we were able to do a volunteer project to rebuild a hiking trail and also do some leadership activities and just have some fun. It was fun connecting with those students who are in the same school but a lot of them I hadn’t talked to before, so it was nice getting to know them and build a connection with them.
Si: I don’t know if I can think of just one. It sneaks up on you pretty quick, that’s for sure. Getting everything ready, we only have five kids graduating. It’s good because we can all be there and we do have a big ceremony. It’s been a lot of work but it’s been fun.
Sydney: Last year, my entire social class. We would make the funniest jokes and just enjoy talking to each other while we worked. I just have to say being part of the school in general has just been awesome.
As far as final thoughts go, Micah eloquently summed up his appreciation to his fellow students both for nominating him and providing such a solid and memorable high school experience.
“It’s been an honour [to be chosen as valedictorian]. It’s nice having the sense that my grad class supports me and my goal is to, on behalf of the grad class, thank the community but also give some inspiring messages to my fellow students. I’ve worked hard through school and to a certain extent it’s being recognized and throughout my school career I’ve tried to have a broad range and group of friends, from sports to music to arts and everything in between, so that’s definitely nice and I’m happy to be able to represent my grad class.”