Another group of graduates from another year gone are setting out to attain a future of their choosing. Graduation is what most Grade 12 students look forward to. It’s the end of one chapter, the completion of a milestone, and the beginning of a whole new period in their lives.
The Ponoka Outreach School graduation was June 5 and the 15 graduates were copiously praised for all their achievements. It will be a night to remember.
The ceremony was full of munificent memories of the students and traditional words of wisdom, as all graduations are.
The student’s principal, Scott Lewis, not only gave a speech but was up on stage with the graduates hugging each one as they passed by, rather than give them a congratulatory handshake.
Special guests pastor Paul Spate and elder Richard Lightning were in attendance to bless the graduates, in both English and Cree. Also in attendance, giving speeches were Amber Hester, assistant superintendent of student services, and school board trustee Lorrie Jess.
“Laugh when you can, apologize when you should,” said Jess.
She touched on the grad’s theme, pushing your limits, as something she’d be able to provide viable wisdom on, based on personal experiences from living from the confines of a wheelchair. However, rather than detailing the limitation she or the graduates might face she simply gave guidelines anyone could take into account when facing any situation.
Following the banquet, awards were given to six of the graduates and 16 other students of the school.
The Trades Award was received by Jonathan Van de Pol. Van de Pol competed at Skills Canada in cabinet making; he got gold at regionals and bronze at provincials.
Graduate Awards were given to:
• Jamie Lewis – the Humanities Award
• Joanna White – Award of Excellence
• Kirsty Baptiste – Perseverance and Dedication Award
• Ashley Schultz – Independent Learner Award
• Rochelle Cattleman – Most Positive Contribution to School Environment Award
• Jonathan Van de Pol – Trades Award
Other students who received Awards were:
• Avery Kirchmann – Humanities Award
• Adrianna Bushaw – Positive Attitude Award
• Ben Rabbit – Perseverance and Dedication Award
• Chase Heatherington – Personal Growth Award
• Breanne Hetherington – Personal Growth Award
• Laina Kirchmann – Independent Learner Award
• Rick Ewacha – Determination and Tenacity Award
• Jessica Baker – Determination and Tenacity Award
• Allyson Buffalo – Math/Science Award
• Gerald Van de Pol – Math/Science Award
• Jacob Colyn – Math/Science Award
• Darryl Stretch – Citizenship Award
• Ty Bull – Most Improved Award
• Calvin Littlechild – Most Improved Award
• Molly Applegarth – Most Improved Award
• Dallas Lightning – Most Positive Contribution to School Environment Award