North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

Lakewood honors Class of 2016


Christopher Andersson

Lakewood High School seniors celebrate graduating during their commencement ceremony on June 11.

Lakewood High School celebrated their class of 2016 on June 11 during the high school's commencement ceremony.

Students at Lakewood High School have gone through a long journey to reach the graduation they are at now, said valedictorian speaker Lilly Whitehead.

In the beginning "you're nervous about high school. It's a new and different place, and the stakes seem a lot higher. What if I get lost on the first day? What if none of my friends are in my classes?" said Whitehead.

Eventually, though, you get past the freshman and sophomore years.

"You're taking more difficult classes and are up for some more challenges," said Whitehead.

"You're dead tired by now, and maybe you're itching to get out of here, or maybe you aren't sure whether you want to leave high school, but you have to finish strong anyway," she said.

And that's where many Lakewood High School students are now, finishing strong after years of work.

"To get where you are today, especially in the last four years, you have used your time to study, grow and learn new things," said Patrick Cruz, the class-chosen speaker for Lakewood High School's 2016 graduation.

Of course there was the additional challenge of construction for the new Lakewood High School this year as well.

"Which has impacted parking, busing, noise, and access to spring sports practice and games," said Lakewood High School principal Mike Curl. "I appreciate the maturity and leadership of these students."

Because of construction the school held their first graduation ceremony off-campus this year.

"Because of construction, limited parking and the desire to allow more people to attend the commencement, we decided to move graduation to this wonderful site," at the Tulalip Amphitheatre, said Curl.

Faculty speaker and English teacher Ron Thorvilson said that this will always be an important time for students.

"You will take memories from Lakewood that will last a lifetime," he said. "Many of you live in the moment not realizing there is so much more to life," he said.

Thorvilson said that he is proud of the students from this year's class.

"Hopefully you are proud of who you have become at Lakewood High School. I am proud of you," he said.

Christopher Andersson

Lakewood High School seniors enter the Tulalip Amphitheatre at the beginning of their school's commencement ceremony on June 11.

"I am so grateful I had the opportunity to run my high school race here at Lakewood High School and I'm excited to see what the class of 2016 will do in the future," said Whitehead.

According to Curl, 21 percent of the school's graduates plan to attend a four-year college, 39 percent a community college, 10 percent a technical school and 6 percent plan to go into the military.

"Graduating high school is an accomplishment worth celebrating, and I trust there will be many more accomplishments in the lives of the students of 2016," he said.

Cruz said that many have worked "tirelessly" to get to this moment, something so big that it seemed like it would never come.

"Many of us here today are sitting here with a large goal crossed off our checklist," he said.

"This will be one of the biggest things most of us have accomplished in our lives. However, graduation is just the beginning," he said.


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