Graduation Speech : High School

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Throughout high school, I worked a part-time job, took care of my siblings, and tried to achieve the best grades possible. As I struggled through these troubled times, I seldom thought about college. I just wanted to be the first in my family to graduate from high school. However, Mr. Jones, my tenth grade biology teacher, encouraged me to consider going to college. As I began my senior year, he called me into his office to make me aware of the application process not only for colleges but also the various scholarship offers and grants available to me. Because of his efforts, I will be stepping onto the campus of Old Dominion University in August 2012 after winning a scholarship. Because my scholarship does not provide spending money and I must maintain a grade point average of 3.2, my path over the next few months will be a balancing act as I work to save money for spending, study to make certain I am ready for classes, and spend as much time as possible with my family before I leave home.

Working is nothing new to me. I have had some type of a part-time job since I was fourteen years old. I spent many summer days harvesting crops at my grandfather’s farm. The work was hard, but I learned the importance of staying focused on the task at hand. Failure to do so could have resulted in a serious injury, as farm machinery is not forgiving. These experiences with “Pap” enabled me to learn a great deal about the farming process and the selling of produce to local restaurants. I

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