Woodsville Grads Got It Done
Passing time before the start of their graduation, Woodsville High School graduates from left, Mikayla McClintock, Taylor Horne, and Cody McKeage share a laugh at in Woodsville, N.H, on June 14, 2014.
Valley News - Jennifer Hauck
Woodsville High School graduates make their way outside before the start of their commencement ceremony in Woodsville, N.H, on June 14, 2014.
Valley News - Jennifer Hauck
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Woodsville — The families, staff, and faculty of Woodsville High School packed the gymnasium and queued out the exits to watch 69 seniors graduate on Saturday morning.
After the high school band ushered in the class of 2014 and the marshals directed them to sit, Louisa Noble, the class secretary, thanked the parents, teachers and guidance counselors assembled before her.
“We owe you so much,” she said.
Julia Bowman, the salutatorian, congratulated her classmates and offered some advice: Be prepared to make mistakes. Bowman quoted Thomas Edison, who was a poor student and gave up on many ideas before inventing the light bulb. Edison once said, “I didn’t fail a thousand times. The light bulb was an invention with a thousand steps.”
Next, the band played December Dance , an arrangement by Andrew Boysen Jr., a music professor at University of New Hampshire.
Woodsville’s valedictorian, Katherine Emley, compared the diplomas she and her class were about to receive to the experience of Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani activist for education for girls who at 14 survived an assassination attempt by the Taliban.
“(Yousafzai) recognized the power that my classmates and I now possess — an education,” Emley said.
Before he presented the commencement awards, the school’s principal, Robert Jones, wished the audience a happy Father’s Day.
“To the dads of the graduates, you couldn’t have a better gift than this group right here,” he said.
Over $100,000 in prizes were to be handed out, Jones said, thanks in part to this year’s fundraising efforts.
“Thank you for buying the pumpkins; thank you for having your cars washed,” he said.
The school’s highest honor, the Alumni Attainment Award, went to Justin Woods, who will attend Pratt University and plans to major in biophysics.
The Gilman Scholarships, which totaled $75,000, were awarded to Ben Fournier, Anna LaLonde, Allyssa Emery, Alexis Emerson, Cassidy Townsend, Cody McKeage, Elizabeth Blouin, Helen Deblois, Jessica Bowman, Julia Bowman, Katherine Emley, Louisa Noble, Mikayla McClintock, Molly Simonds and Sarah Liang.
The seniors stood up to receive their diplomas. When he was handed his, Michael McGuire III hefted it in the air.
“I did it!” he hollered. John Stover lost his cap on his way back to his seat, revealing a mop of curly brown hair, and recovered it with a fist pump and hoots and cheers from the crowd.
Once the class of 2014, wearing Woodsville white and green, had sat down together, Class President Elizabeth Blouin gave the farewell address.
The crowd held its breath while the class marshals directed the seniors to turn their tassels from left to right, and when it was done, erupted in applause, whooping and blowing air horns.
Outside, families took photographs and videos of their children, now graduates.
Rob Wolfe can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 603-727-3242.
CLASS OF 2014
Joe Abrahamsen, SUNY-Dutchess; Megan Allsop; Tyler Avery, Lakes Region Community College; Allan Ball; Zachary Bigue; Elizabeth Blouin, University of Maine-Farmington; Kyle Boutin; Julia Bowman, Salve Regina University; Jessica Bowman, White Mountains Community College; Ashley Boyce; Jaid Chase; Kevin Cowles, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Steven Cummings; TJ Cyr; Thomas D’Angelo, PG year Tilton School; Helen Deblois, Elms College; Alexis Emerson, SNHU; Allyssa Emery, SNHU; Katherine Emley, Youth exchange in Ghana/Harvard; Julie Eno; Doug Forsythe, State College of Florida; Benjamin Fournier, Lyndon State College; River Fox; Nicole Frizzell, White Mountains Community College; Jacob Frost, Lyndon State College; Jenna Guilmain, Plymouth State; Jesse Hatch; Sarah Hatch, Plymouth State; Taylor Horne, Northeastern State (OK) University; Laura Irwin, White Mountains Community College; Anna Lalonde, Southern Maine Community College; Meghan Levreault, U.S. Navy; Sarah Liang, Marywood University; Ian Locke, Air Force; Graham Lydon, Madison Media Institute; Mariah Mallett, Bay State College; Chantelle Marro; Shawn Marro, U.S. Army; Mikayla McClintock, White Mountains Community College; Michael McGuire III; Cody McKeage, Johnson and Wales; Jared Mitchell, U.S. Army; Kieran Morse; Louisa Noble, University of New England; Allyson O’Shana, Baylor University; Ronald Orr; Michael Parker, National Guard; Meghan Poor; Alexis Roberts, Michael’s Beauty School; Daniel Roy,Lyndon State College; Shaina Roystan; Molly Ruprecht, UNH; Elizabeth Rushford, East Carolina University; Lindsay Salyers; Molly Simonds, White Mountains Community College; Brooke Spencer; Brandon Start; Hanna Stewart, U.S. Navy; John Stover; Mona Strauss; Cassidy Townsend, UMass-Amherst; Christana Valliant, Lyndon State College; Andrew Varney, University of Maine-Farmington; Carrie Vogt; Jasmine Walker; Erin Whiting; Daniel Whitney; Justin Woods, Clark University; Taylor Wyman.