by Marlys Kruger
COLFAX — With the class motto “The Best Moments are Spent in the Life of Friends” from someone anonymous, 56 students from the Class of 2015 of Colfax High School received their diplomas May 15 during the commencement ceremony in the high school gym.
Senior Natalie Dworak presented the “Welcome” speech to the crowd before the high school band, under the direction of James Woodford with several senior members performing, played selections from the movie “Titanic”. High School principal John Dachel announced over $272,000 of scholarship money from various institutions (which did not include more than $50,000 from Armed Forces to five students who have committed themselves in one way or another), was given away to members of this class.
Valedictorian Jeremiah Wait addressed the crowd with a “Never Have I Ever” speech which included some class participation as they were asked to stand when he recited an incident or activity that involved any of them throughout the four years of high school. After his list was completed, every class member had stood up at least once.
Salutatorian Xena Dusek spoke about the importance of community, school staff and classmates and the role they played in her being successful in her elementary and high school years. Junior Jarrod Rudi presented the slide show which displayed a baby photo along with a senior photo on the big screen. It should be noted several of the boys were wearing Packer jerseys in the baby photo, and some of those same boys were members of the school football team at some point!
The high school choir, directed by Carrie Christensen, which included several seniors performing for the last time, sang “I Carry Your Heart” and District Administrator Bill Yingst recognized and thanked all the students, their families, school board members, administrators and staff members who were involved with and supported athletics, music, after prom committee and various club activities throughout the years. Yingst then presented an always inspiring address which related back to his military days.
“After entering the armed forces right after my high school graduation, I learned an important lesson,” Yingst said. “My sergeant inspected our beds every morning to make sure they were made to perfection. This was always our first task of the day and if you could get that simple thing done correctly, it would lead to more tasks being done successfully throughout the day. We learned little things like this do matter and you should take pride in completing all tasks, large or small. If you have a bad day, you will come home at the end of it to find a made bed that you had made successfully, and you could start over the next day.”
Yingst also stated to the graduates that it is OK to fail as long as they learn from it, and they should always do more than what is required of them.
Diplomas were presented by board members Todd Kragness and Kyle Knutson, and senior Grant Phillips gave the “Farewell” speech. Ushers from the junior class, Zach Meyer and Brett Prince presented a red rose, which was the class flower, to each student as they made their exit from the gym.