Thursday, July 9, 2015

A glimpse of me, more than a decade ago

Below is a transcript of my salutatory speech back in highschool. I made a soft copy of it in order to keep a memory, not to brag. I dare not brag about it because I cringe at most aspects of it - some ideas on it, some words used, the grammar and punctuation, among others. Nonetheless, give me the liberty to "fossilize" this keepsake from the past.

           Distinguished guests, Ms. Principal, members of the faculty, fellow graduates, ladies and gentlemen, my friends, I feel deeply honored for having been given this opportunity to speak before a gathering of intellectuals and men and women of the academe, our dearest parents, and my fellow graduates.

            Today is the day of yet another great achievement for all of us and a crowning glory of our struggle over a laborious period of time in search of knowledge, truth and enlightenment.
            It isn’t easy to say farewell after four long years of sweet and unforgettable camaraderie and friendship, but go we must, for our stay in this institution is over. We may keep these fond memories that we shared together. But we are grownups now. We must act more maturely and try to measure up to what our mentors expect of us, the best we can.

            Our school has prepared us for greater and perhaps more difficult adventure in life – that is college education. After all, it’s every school’s concern and objective not just to turn out graduates but to ensure that every graduate is well prepared and equipped with the necessary skill and knowledge to be able to pursue higher education. Thus, it is the school’s first initiative: to focus on the outcomes or the quality of education of the would-be graduates must acquire in the course of their study.

            To me, education isn’t all about academics. It isn’t all about getting high grades either. It is during education that one must also develop good traits and values everyone needs to be successful in life. Being a class valedictorian or a salutatorian is not a passport to success, for knowledge without values is doomed to fail. More often than not, it’s the individual who have developed good moral characters in their early years that reap happiness and success late in their lives. Being genuinely happy is an ultimate success. That’s why our teachers, our second parents in school, are being tasked to mold us into a better person, better graduates, for better outcomes.

            It is the pride of every education institution to produce a great number of graduates that would someday become models of the society. The destiny of any nation, big or small, is determined by how their leaders give importance to literacy and the quality of education among its population.

            So my fellow graduates, let us all thrive to excel as we take another journey towards our goals. Let’s pray to God for our guidance along the way. And of course, we must be grateful to our parents for their sacrifices.

            To our beloved mentors, our grateful heart now bids goodbye, to our Alma Mater, from whose fountain of wisdom and virtue we’ve imbibed deeply, a fond farewell. To our friends and classmates who went along in the search of knowledge, thank you and so long.

            We shall go our different ways, but wherever we are, the memories of our dear St. Emilene Academe will truly spur us to greater achievements.

            To all, a pleasant goodbye and Godspeed.

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