Lexie Nordhoff delivered the salutatory address at Thursday night’s graduation at Maricopa High School. Here is the full text of her speech:
I HAVE SPENT MY SENIOR YEAR in a constant panic about running out of time, and I have often listened to my friends and classmates express similar concerns. We worry about how little time we have to do the things that we said we would.
I still haven’t directed my own short film like I insisted I would during junior year, and I never wrote a book like I wanted to freshman year. And now, as we stand here tonight, many of us probably believe that time is up.
But our time has just begun.
The nice thing about high school is that it happens when we’re young. We’ve had time to make mistake after mistake, and we’ve had time to learn from those mistakes.
You may feel like your story is coming to an end, and honestly, at times I feel the same way. After being online my entire junior year, I lost a lot of motivation to do my schoolwork, and there were many times when I really wanted to give up.
But I have found motivation through my peers. I owe it to my childhood best friends, Izzy, Rori and Brenna, who were there to support me when I felt like writing a paragraph would be the death of me. I owe it to the other seniors on the tennis team, Molly, Chloe and Anouk, who never stopped encouraging me, despite my lower skill level. I owe it to the classmates who always seemed to be on top of things, I have learned from them.
It is important to remember that your story is just starting. Every person here tonight has lived a completely different life, and has overcome entirely unique obstacles, but we all share in this moment.
Whether you feel like you have accomplished everything you ever wanted, or like you have done absolutely nothing, you have, in fact, done something incredible. You have graduated high school, and you have done it in the midst of a pandemic. You have persevered through unimaginable obstacles, and you should be proud of that.
On a personal note, today happens to be my 18th birthday, and I want to say that I am so honored to spend it with such a remarkable group of people. This class has been an incredible inspiration for me, and I am so excited to see all of the amazing things we are going to accomplish. As we prepare to embark on our separate journeys, I want to remind you all that it is okay to take your time. Your story is what you make of it. We have just concluded our prologues.
Before we leave I advise you to cherish your time here tonight, because tomorrow begins the first chapter.
Lexie Nordhoff, a member of National Honor Society, was recognized for Academic Excellence.