‘Our new chapter’

200 graduate from Dodger Class of 2022

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert The newly-minted FDSH graduates toss their graduation caps into the air in celebration on Sunday.

They spent half of their high school careers learning to navigate a global pandemic as students, and now, the Fort Dodge Senior High Class of 2022 is heading out into the world to navigate the next chapter of their lives.

Two hundred graduates walked across the stage at Dodger Stadium during Sunday’s commencement ceremony.

“There are so many new things and opportunities opening all around us, which can be overwhelming,” co-valedictorian Rylie Reed said in her speech. “But I ask that you learn from the experiences because they will help you progress further toward your goal.”

Superintendent Derrick Joel shared some wisdom with the new graduates.

“Some of the best advice I have received over the years is that when you stop learning, you stop growing as a person,” he said. “As you leave here today, treat every experience as a learning experience.”

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert Rolando Renteria-Leadley holds up his diploma holder after walking across the stage at the FDSH commencement ceremony on Sunday.

Reed and her co-valedictorians Malaney Butrick and Jaren Christy talked about the past, present and future of the Class of 2022.

To capture the “bittersweet reality” of the high school commencement, Butrick quoted author Patrick Ness — “Everything’s always ending, but everything is always beginning, too.”

“The final chapter of our childhood is coming to an end,” she said. “But with the end of that chapter comes a new beginning, a fresh start, a chance to put all of these years of life lessons to use. So as we begin our new chapter, take a moment to thank those who helped you get to this point. Our whole lives have prepared us for this moment. Now it’s the time to continue to put those life lessons to use and grow into the people we are meant to become.”

Christy noted the challenges the class has gone through to get where they are today.

“My fellow seniors, we’ve made it,” he said. “You’ve come so far over these past four years. And along the way, we’ve had to endure many challenges, including a global pandemic — but through all the social distancing, homework and puberty, we are finally at the finish line.”

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert Graduate Anthony Humpal walks off the stage after receiving his diploma during the FDSH graduation ceremony on Sunday at Dodger Stadium. Humpal has enlisted in the U.S. Army.

Times flies, Christy said, highlighting that it’s important to live for today.

“Time is our most important and invaluable resource and it is important that we use it to our fullest potential to help lead the way to a better future,” he said. “Learning to let go of the past and stop waiting for the future will help you focus on living in the present and seizing the moment.”

Reed focused on looking ahead.

“Our future will only become the present and our present will always become the past,” she said. “Learn to embrace the unknown and face the future, just keep moving forward.”

At Class Night last week, graduates were awarded a combined total of $1,380,000 in scholarships.

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert Braydon Flint-Bozeman shakes Superintendent Derrick Joel's hand after receiving his diploma at the FDSH commencement ceremony on Sunday afternoon.

“We all look forward to seeing where your adventures will take you and how each of you will make a difference,” Joel said.

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert FDSH graduate Aubrieona Lynn McLoughlin wears a photo of her late grandfather Dick Marsh on her graduation cap during Sunday's commencement ceremony at Dodger Stadium.

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert Fort Dodge Senior High saw 200 seniors graduate during Sunday's commencement ceremony at Dodger Stadium.

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert FDSH valedictorian Malaney Butrick gives one of three valedictorian speeches at Sunday's commencement ceremony. Co-valedictorians Jaren Christy and Rylie Reed also gave speeches.

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert Senior a cappella singers sing the national anthem during Sunday's commencement ceremony at Dodger Stadium.

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert
FDSH graduates walk onto the field at Dodger Stadium for the Class of 2022 commencement ceremony on Sunday afternoon.


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