Gloversville High School celebrated 169 spring 2019 graduates Saturday, June 29, with a packed gymnasium of family and friends.
During his speech, valedictorian Paul-John Clet worked a Rubik’s Cube that Principal Richard DeMallie had mixed up for him. He likened each part of the four-step method to solve the puzzle to the four years they spent in high school, holding up the colorful cube after describing the “home-stretch” of senior year.
“We have all solved our Rubik’s cube, but putting a bunch of solved cubes together makes each one indistinguishable,” Clet said. “That’s why I ask you to be extraordinary. Be different in a world seemingly forcing you to be the same.”
Commencement speaker Greg Sheeler, a 1998 GHS graduate and standout football player who now coaches high school football, encouraged the graduates to embrace their individual talents and dreams and live them out to their fullest potential.
“My challenge to all of you today is to not stay on the sidelines and watch those dreams pass you by,” Sheeler said. “Write your dreams down on paper and chase them every day. Chase them with heart. Chase them courage, and chase them with all the talent that you possess.”
Principal DeMallie told the graduates “to dial it in,” focus and stay on the path to success. He recalled the part in the movie “Castaway” in which Tom Hanks reflects on how he survived alone on an island for many years.
Toward the end of the movie, Hanks says that when he thought he had lost all hope, “the tide came in and brought me a sail.” DeMallie told the 2019 graduates to keep faith, stay positive and continue to move forward even when there is no end in sight. “Dial it in; find that passion; stay positive because in those moments of failure, which will unfortunately come, you never know when the world will bring you a sail,” he said.
Science teacher Jennifer Hazzard delivered the Faculty Message, giving the graduates a laundry list of advice, including not just trying to be nice to others, but genuinely trying to like everyone. “Imagine what the world would be like if everybody just really tried to like each other despite their differences,” she said. “Be kind to everybody. Go out of your way to do it. …You’ll have a number of regrets in your life, but I assure you being kind will never, ever be one of them.”