NAUGATUCK — As the notes of “Pomp and Circumstance” mingled with the cheers of loved ones, the 111th graduating class of Naugatuck High School marched onto their football field for one final night together.
The evening of June 27 marked a time of celebration for the Class of 2011—a time to celebrate the past, the present and a future filled with endless possibilities.
“Welcome Class of 2011 to the first day of the rest of your lives. I hope the world’s ready for us,” Salutatorian Dayna Seeger told her classmates.
Seeger said the Class of 2011 has come a long way since the days when its main concern was whether “freshmen Fridays” were real, and graduation seemed like a day that would never come.
“We made it. Naugatuck Class of 2011, we made it,” Seeger said.
Over the past four years, the Class of 2011 has had many highlights, and Mayor Robert Mezzo was more than proud to name a few. Mezzo pointed out how the Class organized a human rights awareness day to stop bullying, how 87 percent of the more than 300 graduates will be going onto higher education in the fall, and how 5 percent of graduates will be enlisting in the military.
Mezzo added one more highlight, much to the delight of the crowd. A highlight, he emphasized, the people in Ansonia can’t celebrate this year—an NVL football championship.
“Your accomplishments are indeed many,” Mezzo said as he looked over the Class of 2011. “But, this is only the beginning here today.”
As the Class of 2011 leaves Naugatuck High School behind, Class Essayist Rebecca Dube channeled poet Robert Frost for some inspiring words. Dube spoke on the endless number of roads the future holds for graduates. Whichever road the graduates travel, Dube said it’s their choice.
“The future is all about choices,” Dube said.
Dube described the diploma each graduate received as a map to begin their travels with.
“This is your new map, a clear page to fill with your own journey,” Dube said.
Before the graduates take the first steps on their journey, Valedictorian Zoila Jurado encouraged her peers to look around onto the faces of their classmates, family and friends.
“Everyone here has helped you become who you are today,” Jurado said.
Each graduate has met obstacles over the past 12 years and come out successful. Over the years, Jurado said, it was classmates and loved ones who helped to guide each graduate through the biggest challenge of all—growing up.
“May today’s successes be the beginning of tomorrow’s achievements,” Jurado wished upon the Class of 2011.