Congrats, area graduates

It’s that bittersweet season, when we beam with pride over the accomplishments of our high school and college graduates but know we’ll miss them as they head off into the real world, and when our students themselves practically vibrate at the excitement over the next chapter of their lives but weep over saying goodbye to lifelong friends.

Yes, graduation season is upon us. The News printed its celebration of graduates this week (if you didn’t get one, you can pick it up at The News, 130 Park Place in downtown Alpena) and Alpena Community College and Onaway High School already held their commencement ceremonies.

Our little ones are all grown up and heading off to the real world. They’re adults now, ready to make their own decisions and figure out their own problems and make their own new impacts on the world.

Congratulations, graduates.

We’re proud of you.

We know you’ll do amazing things.

We hope you’ll take a few lessons along with you: Hard work and determination count for more than anything. Act always with integrity and you’ll never find yourself in real trouble, even if you make mistakes along the way. Love yourself first, and then you can better love someone else. The grass is rarely greener on the other side, even if it looks that way from a distance.

We could go on and on, but you know a lot of that already.

So go out into the world and do great things. Find your passion and work hard to find a way to make money off of that. Make a difference in whatever community you land in. Volunteer. Contribute. But always protect time for yourself to recharge.

You’ve got this, graduates.

And, if you ever need help along the way, your community is always here for you.



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