I’ve written many letters and articles but few were as difficult as the letter I wrote to my graduating seniors. A few months ago the yearbook committee asked me if I wanted to submit a letter to be published in the yearbook as a last chance to say goodbye. Of course I said yes!
Little did I know how hard it would be.
Four years boiled down to one page. And I was writing it a few months before the end of the school year, when my kids were excited about prom and college applications, feeling sad about the months flying by.
This is my first class. I’ve been their advisor since they first walked through the doors of High Tech and part of me can’t imagine not looking outside my classroom to see them playing video games in the senior lounge. But I am honored to soon call them my peers as fellow alumni.
I just have to get through the next two weeks without crying too much!
As I write this letter, your council and prom committee are ordering invitations, booking a DJ, and planning the best prom ever. Graduation seems so far away. Most of you haven’t chosen a college yet, you haven’t taken AP exams, and senioritis is only just beginning to set in. But all too soon you will be reading this letter as you get ready for the last day of school. You will have chosen a college and your last days will be spent cleaning out your locker, signing yearbooks, and hugging everyone you see in the halls of High Tech.
Four years ago, you stood in the MPR as Mr. Simon welcomed the Class of 2014 to High Tech. You were all much shorter and much quieter. I don’t think anyone talked that morning! You looked around at the packed MPR and were overwhelmed. The people sitting beside you were strangers; would you ever become friends? Would your bus actually pick you up the next day? Would you ever understand that weird BASH schedule? It seemed impossible.
But in a matter of days, you were no longer a crowd of individuals. I watched you grow into a family right before my eyes, cheering each other on and standing up for one another. You laughed your way through Free Form Friday projects and your first Field Day. You were soon sophomores and then juniors. Prom came and went. College applications and essays took over your life for a few months. Now four years have passed and it’s time to watch you walk across the stage and receive your diplomas. I’m not sure any of us are ready for that moment.
How is it 2014? How have four years gone by already? Some things have changed a lot over the past four years: I used to be taller than most of you! Some things haven’t changed at all: you’re still a family and the best class ever. But you will always be my first class. We’ve taken this journey together, from “Poverty, Poverty Knock” to Mean Girls quotes to Brian Williams and his intense hatred of blogging, laughing and learning for the last four years. You are the first class that I’ve taught as freshmen and seniors. You are the first class I have advised. You are an unforgettable and irreplaceable group of kids!
But now you are all grown up. It’s time to leave behind High Tech and move on to the world of college and adulthood. You are an amazing group of students and I can’t wait to see what you do in the future! Thank you for being my first class. Thank you for always making me laugh and making me smile. Thank you for an amazing four years!
High Tech won’t be the same without you! Be sure to visit (and tweet a lot!). Don’t forget about us back here at HTHS. Look out for each other and stay as close as you are now. You will never forget your time at High Tech and it will always be home, but now it’s time to see the world, to learn and grow. You’re going to change the world and I can’t wait to stand back and watch you do it.
Welcome to the other side- I’m proud to call you fellow alumni!
PS- Keep reading!