The Class of 2012 from Anson County Early College, Anson High School, Anson New Technology High School and Anson Academy received diplomas with pomp, circumstance and much celebration Saturday morning, June 9, at the Anson High School stadium.
After several citizens and students protested at the recent school board meeting, the commencement ceremony included special recognition for each school’s valedictorian, salutatorian and honors graduates.
“There is still much work to be done before we release them to adulthood,” Superintendent Dr. Greg Firn said to the parents at the start of the ceremony. “We know this is but a moment. A moment you’ve dreamed about, a moment you’ve cried about… what you do after today, what you will do tomorrow will help shape who you are.”
Before the student speeches, Firn reminded the graduates, “You will always have a place to call home.”
In her speech, Anson Early College valedictorian Amber Lea Teal recalled how in 2007, her mother dropped her off for her first day of school at the early college, which was also her first day at school in Anson County.
Teal said that her decision to attend school in Anson was one of the best decisions she’s ever made, and helped to make her who she is today. “Our community can be seen through us,” she said. “We are Anson.”
Anson High School salutatorian Caitlyn Jackson continued the “We are Anson” theme. “I’m proud to say that I was here at Anson,” she said. “I have discovered myself these four years of high school.”
Jackson also joked that the graduates’ high school years have been filled with “many memories we will never forget — like when I fainted at last year’s graduation.”
Anson New Tech valedictorian Jessica Beachum pointed out how the obstacles and triumphs the seniors experienced during high school have helped mold them today. She spoke repeatedly of “our legacy,” and said changing the world “starts with us.”
After all diplomas were awarded, the graduates of all four schools turned their tassels in unison, officially becoming the Class of 2012.