Good luck in your brave new world, class of 2014

THERE WAS ANOTHER BUMPER crop this June – of graduates. High schools throughout the county have completed their commencement ceremonies for the class of 2014 and now the members of the class are ready to head off into their futures – full of hope, dreams and ambitions.

In many ways, they’re the same hopes, dreams and ambitions that the countless classes that came before them headed into their future with, but in many other ways they are so different.

For many of this year’s graduates, some goals remain constant – further education, finding a good job and career, raising a family, making a significant contribution with their lives. Those have been goals for graduates for generations and centuries.

But in many ways, it’s a far different world they march into than the one that faced their parents or grandparents when they commenced their adult lives.

At Plymouth’s graduation Sunday, class of 2014 examplar Maggie McConnaha called her class “changemakers,” noting the many firsts they have seen just in their short academic careers in the Plymouth School District. She pointed to the many firsts in the schools ranging from netbooks for every student to healthy food initiatives in the cafeteria and much more.

Compare that to their parents’ educational experiences, when computers were still the size of a desk, not a book; or their grandparents, when computers weren’t something that was in every classroom but was something you had to take a field trip to go see.

Who knows what kind of changes will come in this world as the class of 2014 reaches their 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond, and watches their children and then their grandchildren march up to receive their diplomas?

But the class of 2014 will be ready for those changes, McConnaha predicted.

“We are adaptable. No matter what is thrown at us over these following four, 10 or 50 years, because of the education we have received and our amazing ability to change, we will be able to rise to meet it,” she told her classmates and the audience at City Park.

And right she is.

The world continues to change, as it has for years, for the most part for the better thanks in large part to the educated young people who have stepped out into that world and stepped up to meet the challenges.

We’ve progressed because we’ve placed so much of our emphasis on providing each generation with the best education possible, knowing that education is the solid foundation on which growth and progress are built.

That continues to be true for the graduates of the class of 2014 from all of Sheboygan County’s high schools, and the future they build on that foundation should be an exciting and rewarding one.

At issue:
Another class graduates
Bottom line:
Ready to change the world

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Warren Luedke