It turns out, teenagers can pay very close attention to detail.
When it comes to their high school careers, they have it calculated down to the day.
“High school is 720 days long,” said Mia Cantrell in a graduation speech she shared with Elsa Eckenrod on Friday night.
Added Eckenrod, “Mia and I have enjoyed every one of those days with you.”
High school is over for the estimated 440 WCHS seniors who received their diplomas during a 1 hour and 15 minute graduation ceremony at Nunley Stadium.
Next step, the future.
In giving a blast of motivation, valedictorian Lauren Hennessee told her fellow graduates, “When you succeed, you lighten the burden on your fellow man.”
Salutatorian Hannah Wright told graduates not to be confused by fairy tales they may have heard and participation trophies they received growing up.
“Everything that is worth having requires some work,” said Wright.
In injecting humor into her speech, Wright said, “If you want to be president of the United States, get a reality TV show.”
She also said she wanted to stay away from jokes that might bomb because “I think we’ve had enough bomb threats.”
In their shared speech, Cantrell and Eckenrod showed appreciation for the person responsible for the school’s mild insect problem.
“We had school canceled due to bedbugs,” said Cantrell.
“And we want to give a shout-out to that person,” said Eckenrod.
They also provided the most touching moment of the night when they remembered former classmate Hailey Ann Taylor. They shed tears in talking about Hailey, who died in August 2014 at the age of 15.
Outside of that somber time for remembering Hailey, the night was a chance to celebrate accomplishment. And it was a chance for parents to wonder what happened to 13 years.
“To parents, in a blink of an eye you dropped the class of 2017 off in kindergarten and now they’re making graduation speeches,” said Director of Schools Bobby Cox.
Cox thanked the many professionals in the Warren County School System for making the night possible.
“The students who are sitting her tonight are poised for great things because of our teachers and staff,” said Cox.
He also offered a few words of advice.
“You don’t have to be perfect to succeed,” said Cox. He also added, “You’re never too old to set a new goal.”