OSWEGO — High schools around Oswego County this weekend celebrated their graduating seniors and on Saturday, family, friends, community members and educators gathered at the SUNY Oswego Marano Campus Center for the 2019 Buccaneer commencement.
Educators praised the graduating class, which featured 256 diploma candidates, acknowledging their resiliency and the lessons they have learned throughout their education journey.
“You’ve learned how to set goals, work hard, manage your time and how to problem solve,” said Oswego City School District (OCSD) Board of Education President Aimee Callen. “You learned to set priorities and to persevere, to make new friends and manage different personalities. Through all of this you have met many successes and disappointments you have tripped and fallen along the way, but you all got up. I know that because you are all sitting here.”
Oswego High School Principal Pat Wallace echoed Callen’s words, adding the importance of parents and educators in the students’ lives is part of “their success.”
“Today is about all the parts in the process of graduation, it is about putting it all together in a way that sets you up to succeed in the next part of your life," Wallace said. "So today we celebrate all of you. We celebrate all of those people in your life who support you, there are so many people who are part of your success."
Out of the 256 graduation candidates, 53 of them were awarded with the “highest honor graduates” distinction, which is given to students who kept a weighted average of 94 oercent or above over four years. District officials also granted 38 students with the “high honor graduates” award, which is granted to students who kept a weighted average of 90 percent or above over four years. The “honor graduates” award went to 55 students who had a weighted average of 85 percent or above earned over four years.
“We are exceptionally proud of all our students and graduates,” said Superintendent Dr. Dean Goewey. “We wish them nothing but the best on their journies, wherever it may take them, from the halls of Oswego High School.”
Student leaders reflected on their high school experience and thanked educators for the role they played in their high school experience.
“To my teachers: I know that teaching, although rewarding, can be an underappreciated endeavor and I hope that seeing us all here today offers some validation for you to have made an impact on every young mind in this room,” said Valedictorian Sophia Throop.
Class President Jenna Bradshaw concluded the student remarks portion of the ceremony saying she hopes the class will remember their experience at Oswego High School.
“Wherever we end up, I hope everyone remembers where we come from, where we are today and everything and everyone who got us there,” Bradshaw said. “I hope everyone knows none of us had the same high school experience, we all ended up here today becasue of everybody around us. I hope that Oswego High School will help you become the best adult you can be, ready to go and change the world."