Good morning Mr. and Mrs. Tchameni, parents, teachers, friends, and distinguished guests.
I am very happy and very emotional as I stand in front of you all to deliver my graduation speech. I am very proud of my classmates and me, because we finally made it. I can’t help but feel a little nostalgic as I remember the long time it took to be here today. It was not an easy journey and it ends with the beginning of a new chapter, one we have awaited for so long.
High school has come and gone. Our high school years seem to have passed in a burst of activities: classes, grades attained, extracurricular activities and lessons learned. Wherever I find myself tomorrow, whatever challenges I choose to face, I know I can remain true to the principles that shaped my yesterdays; I know I can acknowledge and appreciate what I am today and dare to become whoever I want to be in the future because of the incredible work this institution has done with me. Because of the African America Academy, I can confidently assert that I am a young, courageous and mature woman, who is ready to face the upcoming challenges of life.
For this I would like to thank Mr. and Mrs. Tchameni for this institution, our teachers for being there in case of need, and my family, especially my father who has always been there for me and has made everything in my life possible. He is the one who inspires me to be a better person and I hope Dad, that you are proud of me today.
When I reflect on my stay at the African American Academy, I am amazed by how much I have changed and become a better person. I recall the epic, as well as the bad memories I was able to build with everyone, the difficulties we were able to overcome, but also the strength we demonstrated throughout these years. I never imagined I was going to make it. Now that I’m here, I understand that the rules that may seem harsh, the challenging times I experienced, the tears I shed were worth it.
Dear fellow students, I am very sad as I leave you all today. But remember you cannot succeed without the risk of failure, you cannot have a voice without the risk of criticism and you cannot love without the risk of loss. Failure is not in the falling but in the manner in which you react to the fall.
Thomas A. Edison said “there is no substitute for hard work”. And this quote represents one of the most important lessons the African American Academy has taught me and that I am very grateful for. This quote sums up all these years, years of hard work which eventually paid off, as we, 2016 graduates of the African American Academy stand in front of you all as accomplished individuals.