Congratulations, graduates

Last week marked some of the biggest days in the lives of our local high school seniors.

Some attended large public schools, some attended small private schools and some were homeschooled. But regardless of which school they graduated from, the well-deserved feeling of accomplishment was the same.

No longer will they walk the halls as students at high schools throughout Shelby County, no longer will they fret over ACT scores or securing prom dates. The second they walked across the stage to collect their diplomas, they ended their tenures as children and began their lives as adults.

While covering several graduations throughout the county last week we saw an endless amount of potential and hope for the future.

Ariana Falkner, a salutatorian at Montevallo High School, told her class though they would be known by many labels throughout their lives they would always be graduates, an honor that gives students a reason to “raise your head up high.”

In its first graduation since the formation of the Alabaster City School System, Thompson High School celebrated the graduation of one of the largest senior classes in the area.

“We graduate because of your support and encouragement,” THS 2014 Class President Sarah Beth Holdbrooks said. “We are about to embark on a journey that is like no other. We have been looking forward to this moment for what seems like forever.”

At Spain Park High School’s graduation, Class President Lindsey Young encouraged her classmates to savor the moment as they prepared to move on to the next chapter in their lives.

“It is our turn to celebrate, remember the moment and boldly walk out the door to our future,” Young said. “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”

Graduates, enjoy the next few months as you prepare to move off to college, enter the workforce or enlist in the military. These are truly some of the best days of your lives.

And whatever path you choose to take from this point forward, we know you will make Shelby County proud.

The editorial is the opinion of the Shelby County Reporter editorial board.