Speakers offer wisdom to Cambridge graduates

Mindy Carls
Brenden Allen
Tom Akers, Superintendent
Victor Snook
Annie Johnson
Olivia Akers

Five speakers brought their observations to Cambridge High School’s graduation on Sunday, May 16.

Senior Brendan Allen gave the welcome, which included a prayer.

“Thank you that each one of us is unique and brimming with potential,” he prayed. “Thank you for leading us in our learning, for keeping us safe as we studied, and for watching over us in our final year. May today be a memory that burns bright within everyone here as we embark on each of our paths in life.”

Another senior, Annie Johnson, delivered the first of three honor addresses. She focused on the past and encouraged her classmates to use past experiences to help guide their futures.

Junior high was important in preparing the young boys and girls for high school, Johnson said.

“If I could sum up our junior high experience in three words, it would be encouragement, enjoyment and expectations,” she said.

Johnson thanked faculty and staff.

“As big of an impact as what we learned had on us, it compares nothing to the teachers and staff who made us who we are today,” she said.

In the second honor address, Olivia Akers gave a philosophical approach to the meaning of “present.”

“The present is a stand-alone moment, a state of being,” she said. “And is all we can do with it either cherish it or try to remember to remember it? No. Out of any time, the present is the most active. Our actions exist in the past, that's true, but we make them in the present.

“Through having the courage to make decisions, and judgments, and choices, we create our future,” she said. “One of the most important things we can do with the present is to take action. The phrase Carpe Diem comes to mind. Carpe diem, Seize the day.”

Senior Victor Snook gave the final honor address about the future.

“Class of 2021, I encourage you to set your goals and chase your dreams,” Snook said. “Make those big dreams for yourself, and work each and every day to achieve them without fear. Go out and make the difference in the world instead of waiting for the world to become a better place for you. In a world that often seems to be falling apart around us, we must be the change.

“Although this task may seem impossible in a time such as this, it is achieved by each and every one of us living our lives to the fullest and with meaning and purpose and a higher calling beginning today,” Snook said.

Superintendent Tom Akers gave the guest address.

“Graduates of 2021, you have been faced with your challenges these past 16 months,” Akers said, noting they had shown fortitude, moved forward with a sense of purpose and questioned everything in healthy debate.

He encouraged them to remember their connection to Cambridge.

“You’ve done well and we’re proud of you! Now go out and do something with it, and for goodness sakes, call your mom! Every Sunday! Call her! Not a text! Call her!”