Warren County High School’s Annex Commencement Ceremony was held Thursday and honored graduating seniors with their diplomas.
“I am very proud that Warren County has an Annex,” said WCHS marketing teacher Ric Kinkade, guest speaker. “I’m glad that we have that option. We didn’t have an Annex when I was in high school. If we had had an Annex, I think it would have been a viable option for me. In my senior year, second semester, my parents split up. There really wasn’t a good option for me and my siblings. It was a very chaotic time. You know what that’s like. Confusion. I think an Annex would have been a viable option for me.”
The Annex is available to seniors who, for reasons that vary from student to student, feel they need to leave the structured school setting and work at their own pace. It’s an online program for those that meet the criteria.
Kinkade described these students as resilient, because resilient people recover from difficulties and tackle problems logically.
“There is one thing that you all have in common and that’s resilience. You’ve made a choice to complete your education in spite of life’s circumstances that would have completely derailed you completing high school. In that regard, you have proven that you are resilient people. It’s a characteristic that we admire, because not everyone has it. Educators, psychologists and economists and even the military have studied resilience trying to figure out where it comes from and why some people have it and some people don’t. The bottom line is, we can’t figure it out.”
Resilient people have three characteristics in common, says Kinkade.
“First, they know that life is not fair. They know that sometimes good things will happen and sometimes life is just going to be tough. They expect it. They know that they will not always make the best decisions and they will need to adjust and try again. They know that, sometimes, they will get caught in the ripple effect of someone else’s poor decision that interferes with the direction that we are trying to go.”
“Second, we tend to focus on what we can change and accept what we cannot. Resilient people know how to direct their attention to the good things that help them move forward and not the negative things that hold them back. We don’t dwell on negative things, like we do the positive things. For the most part, we do not. Resilient people make the choice to be grateful for the positive things in their life and they allow that attitude to fuel their outlook on life.”
“Third, you guys, in one form or another, ask yourself, ‘Is what I’m doing helpful or hurtful to me?’ Now, that’s not to say we don’t make irrational or impulsive decisions sometimes. Everybody does it. However, when it comes to getting ourselves back on track, we respond in ways that are helpful to reaching our goals, rather than hurtful. That’s the way we tack control back in our lives.”
After listening to those kind words, seniors’ names were called and they proudly walked the stage to be handed their diplomas by Director of Schools Grant Swallows.
In attendance were Aaron Terrell Ashburn, Chelsey Lynn Ashburn, Serenity Nicole Bivens, Abigail Grace Burgess, Francisca Dominga Castro, John Robert Michael Cook, Mariya Michelle Dillard, Madaline Elizabeth Fisher, Deriam Rolando Franco-Flores, Kyle Robert Hammatt, Hannah Nicole Noel Lee, Halie Ryan Leonard, Cameron Eli Martin, Jada Marie Muncey, Kailey Lanea Muncey, Marissa Cheyenne Nash, Isabel Maria Newby, Chloe Danyel Nokes, Daniel Scott Norrod, Jadelyn Michelle Perrigan, Margaret Elizabeth Proctor, Summer Cheyenne Reed, Trystin Abel Richardson, Maricela Makenna Hope Sanchez-Coppinger, Pacey Lucille Tate, and Riley Jace Wanamaker.
Warren County High School’s Annex Commencement Ceremony was held in the auditorium of the school.