Below is the valedictorian speech made by Joshua Su of the graduating batch of 2019 on 4 October 2019 during the St Joseph’s Private School Form Five Graduation Ceremony held at Stadium Polycarp Sim.
A very good morning to our Director, Mr. Christopher Chua, our Principal, Father Francis Lim, teachers, staff, parents, and my fellow friends. The honor is mine to be given this opportunity to represent the batch of 2019 in delivering our graduation speech today.
Yes, today is the day! It is the day we all have been counting down to but also, dreading, because deep down, we know that after this, we will be parting ways. Looking back, we have shared a long journey together. Along the way, we have laughed, we have cried, we made new friends and also lost some. Unfortunately, part of our life journey is coming to an end and eventually, we will have to say goodbye and embark on a new chapter in our life.
But it seems like only yesterday when we have hugged and forgiven each other at our Form 5 camp. In fact, that was already six months ago. Where did all the time go? Do you remember, the time when we sat in the dark alone? Although some of our candles went out, we were not afraid because we knew that we have our friends by our side. Up on Mount Singai, where we were blindfolded, we held on tightly to each other and together we overcame every obstacle that stood in our way. During the Form 2 camp, can anyone of you remember that we laid on the floor and let some bigger-sized students roll over us? Batch of 2019, from buying dinner with just two ringgit, to the night when we express our gratitude and apologies for each other, indeed, we have come a long way since the very beginning.
And our beginning started when we stepped into this school for the very first time. Back then, when we were all anxious about the first day of school, we asked questions like, “How am I going to fit into this new environment? How am I going to say ‘hi’ to befriend a guy or a girl?” But now, some five years later, we are only apprehensive about the day when we step out of this school for the very last time. This is our last assembly, we will probably wonder how we are going to say goodbye and what are to expect in the real world outside.
Time flies, soon, some of us will go on to college, others will go straight to the work force. But what we all have in common to face the world is the invaluable nurturing and enriching experience we were given in this school. In this school, we master languages, so that the world can hear our ideas and thoughts; we learn science, to better understand the rules governing our universe; we draw or doodle as it can be therapeutic and not just because it is Art.
Besides academic education, our school never failed in unearthing talents. Through the White Rajah, we discovered stars among our friends; and through all those celebrations we have in our school assemblies, we got to enjoy our own K-pop oppas. Our batch has garnered benefits from all these experiences. However, it is the years of character building that will be the much-cherished gift, the school has endowed us. For all these, we are eternally grateful.
To our teachers, thank you for your dedication in sharing your knowledge with us and never stopping to believe in us even when we were at our lowest. Thank you for tolerating with our endless requests for free periods. You were the ones who never gave up on us and who always cared for us despite our occasional misbehaviour. Besides that, our batch will also never forget the times when you ask if we are: “Okay Harh?” and all those one love, two love and three love you have given us.
To our CEO, Mr Chua and principal, Fr Francis, thank you for taking the helm in directing and propelling the school to greater heights and to ensure that our welfare is taken care of.
To our parents at the back, we thank you for blessing us with this opportunity to study in this school. We know that behind the education we receive, you work very hard to provide us with the best that we often take for granted.
Not to forget our hardworking and friendly school staff, we will like to express our gratitude for attending to our needs, and putting up with our irresponsible habits.
And to the batch of 2019, look around you. Look at the bonds we have formed. We have bonded in a way that makes goodbyes even harder to say. But no matter how much we want this story of ours to continue, every story has an ending, and every chapter has a conclusion. Therefore, all we can do now is to appreciate the faces that we see here around us. Because, I assure you that you might not see him or her again in the future.
Lastly, to conclude, for some of us, school life has been a sail in stormy sea, for a handful, it has been a rewarding effort and perhaps for many, it has been trying to keep afloat and not drown in the tide of exams. But we must not lose faith, because through mistakes and failures, we gain experience. And experience is the best teacher we can have in our life. So, my friends, along the road, we may have fallen, we may have stumbled, but at the end of the day, we will finish this race as united Josephians. Thank you.