The saying is true.
And when you stop and think how many things have changed in the past, it’s easy to realize how you can lose track of it all, but so far…at my age, remember ring graduation is not that difficult for me; while exploring boxes, drawers and trunks and hidey-holes, where I have stored my graduation memorabilia, with memories floating around in my mind.
Let me ask you. Do you remember the excitement ‘round this time of year? The anticipation of waiting for our class rings that had been ordered? Caps and gowns, invitations and having our graduation pictures made…and our class sidewalk?
Remember? Bill Smith and Jimmie Price were elected to go forward in the constructing of our sidewalk being built in front of the Home-Ec building. I was given permission to wear blue jeans the day the concrete was poured to write the names. (Girls were not allowed to wear dress pants or blue jeans to school back then.)
Bill Smith, President of our class and Master of Ceremonies opened the Commencement Program with: “The New Horizon.”
There are always those who will tell the new generation that the doors of opportunity are closed — that there is no hope for the future, but we believe that more opportunities await us than awaited any other generation in history — that the promises of today will be our achievements of tomorrow.
Other speakers on the program were: Thelma Black, Johnnie Cretnik, Reba Price, Ella Mae LeJong, Kendrick Hearn and Jean Stevenson.
And there it is…in my memorabilia drawer…the typing medal presented to me by Mr. Smith, on the 19th of May, 1946.
And the copy of “The Graduates’ Creed” says it all about my diploma:
This is my diploma. It is a documentary symbol of free public education, upon which rests the perpetual being of the democratic form of government. It signifies the completion of the requirements for graduation from high school as determined by qualified authorities.
I believe that the effort which I have made to obtain it will be rewarded with opportunities and achievements in life which could not otherwise be obtained.
I believe that these have been the formative years of my life and that this diploma will keep me ever mindful of:
An obligation of obedience to and achievement for my parents to reward their years of patient toil and sacrifice to provide opportunity for me.
An obligation of appreciation to my teachers for their unceasing efforts of guidance and wisdom in the fullest development of my physical and mental abilities.
An obligation to my community for its faith in the support of institutions which mold young men and women into the fullest realization of their individual and social value.
I believe that my diploma is a master key to the treasure chest of memorable activities in fellowship and association with my fellow classmates, all of whom have made valuable contributions to my social development.
I believe that all of the powers which I have developed have been the total influence of society and that it is my duty to pursue them not alone for my individual gain but for the betterment of mankind, everywhere.
May God be willing, I shall with all of my strengths and abilities abide with and keep all of these obligations which I have taken in the acceptance of my diploma.