It’s that time of year again.
When the day-to-day routine of getting up for class turns into getting up for work, or for some students, trying not to oversleep for their first semester of college courses. Yearbooks will be signed, hugs will be given and most importantly, a new chapter of life will begin for the 91 graduating seniors of the class of 2014.
It’s a tradition that the high school’s Principal Adam Young has experienced time and time again, but one that never loses its emotional significance.
“There are a lot of really great students in this graduating class and to see them get to graduate is exciting and probably a bit scary for them as they take that much waited for first step into a new world,” Young said.
The graduation ceremony will be held at the school’s football field, Bobcat Stadium on Wednesday at 6 p.m. Of the 91 graduates, 41 seniors will leave the school already having earned some college credit. An advanced diploma will be awarded to 22 seniors who completed a full four years of math and science classes while maintaining a 3.25 GPA. Whether or not a graduate finishes with honors or credit though, Principal Young points out that they should be proud of their accomplishment of making it all the way through, especially considering the more rigorous schedule the schedule the school requires compared to others in the state.
“White Pine High School actually has the highest graduation requirements in the state,” Young said. “We don’t consider a ‘D’ grade as passing like most schools, and we require 25 credits to graduate, compared to the 22 and a half required by the state.”
Those students that did excel in the classroom were honored on Tuesday evening at the school’s Senior Awards Night. According to Young, $150,000 worth of scholarships were awarded to the highest achieving seniors from a variety of local organizations including Mount Wheeler Power, Elks Rotary Club, NV Energy, Midway Gold and many more.
The principal offered advice to all the graduates, emphasizing that whether or not they continue their education through college or become members of the workforce, that he hopes they continue to work hard and to also not let the uncertainty of the future interrupt the happiness of this moment.
“Work and live so that you won’t have regrets later. Don’t wait to be happy or to work hard, start now. That way, you won’t look back on yourself 10 years from now and wish you would have done things differently,” Young said.
White Pine High School boasts an annual graduation rate of 86 percent, six percent over the national average and 15 percent over the state’s average in 2012 according to the Nevada Department of Education.
“A lot of students view graduation as the end but really it is the beginning of the rest of their young lives,” Young said.