Celebrating the Class of 2018

Celebrating the Class of 2018
Posted on 07/06/2018
Celebrating the Class of 2018

During Wyomissing Area Senior High’s 94th commencement ceremony, 167 graduates received their diplomas on Friday, June 2. Student speakers included Valedictorian Matthew Driben, Salutatorian and President of the Class of 2018 Joseph Cullen, Secretary of the Class of 2018 Samuel Botterbusch, and Treasurer of the Class of 2018 Lauren Gechter.

Matthew Driben shared the story of the Quiz Bowl Team’s last regular season match, where he had to recruit new team members because overlapping of extracurricular activities pulled regular team members away from the Quiz Bowl Team.

“Sometimes, life lessons reveal themselves in the least expected places,” Matthew told the audience. “I didn’t think Quiz Bowl would teach me more than random trivia this year, but that day I learned a much broader lesson that applies to all of us graduates here today—that overcoming the challenges we will all face in the real world will be impossible to do alone.”

Matthew concluded by saying, “Comparing life to a Quiz Bowl match may be a bit overdramatic, but the lessons Quiz Bowl teaches, like knowing one’s own limits, asking for help, aiding others, and working as a team, will ultimately guide us graduates to successful futures, regardless of the paths we take.”

Besides being salutatorian and president of the graduating class, Joseph is a runner, and he opened his remarks with the saying “Life is a marathon, not a sprint.”

“I’ve always been told we are to treat life like a marathon, and not a sprint. Of course, as a distance runner, this analogy has always made sense to me,” Joseph began. “At Wyomissing, there’s the momentary comfort of knowing where to go today, and tomorrow, and the day after that... But there are also the nerves that accompany any meaningful race: What’ll happen once I’m on my own? Will anyone be there for me when I stumble? For so long, one thing has remained constant in our lives: structure. But not anymore. Now we run our own races, on our own paths, and at our own paces. While life may be a marathon and not a sprint, do not be afraid to “sprint” in these final moments together and make lifelong memories. e advice of treating life as a marathon and not a sprint, though applicable to most situations, is designed to allow us to sprint at the most meaningful moments.”

In his speech, Samuel reminded his classmates that while they have grown a lot to get to where they are today, they are not nearly finished.

“The future for each of us holds millions of new experiences, new lessons to learn,” Samuel said. “The people we are today, the people who are going to walk out the doors of this building as graduates of Wyomissing, are far from the same people we will be 10 years from now, or 20 or 30... May each of our futures be as interesting and exciting as the last six years have been. Tonight, let’s celebrate all that we’ve accomplished and all of the gifts Wyomissing has given us, but tomorrow, let’s accomplish something new, not as Wyomissing students, but as Wyomissing graduates.”

Lauren Gechter recapped the 2017–18 academic year for her fellow graduates, ending her speech by saying, “I don’t think all of the realities of graduation have hit me yet. We will never again walk the halls of Wyomissing High School as students. We will never again be all together as a class. We will never again have food confiscated from us in the halls or be restricted from wearing ripped jeans. Today, we part ways for the final time, whether it be to post-secondary education, the military, a trade, or a career. I could not imagine a more perfect way to end senior year.”