The Precedent

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Top 5 percent prepares to speak at graduation


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Seniors have one thing on their mind right now: walking down the aisle at graduation. This impending liberation has created an overwhelming sense of senioritis, especially after the Red for Ed walkout teased seniors with a glimpse of the freedom they are about to enjoy as future graduates.

However, while many seniors begin winding down in preparation for graduation, there are three seniors that have one last assignment to stress over before they can relax. Seniors Chris Smith, Joanna Gunaraj, and valedictorian Tamilia Thomas will each deliver a speech of their own creation at graduation in front of their peers.

Smith explained, “Tamilia is the valedictorian so she automatically gets to speak. Joanna and I were voted in to speak by the top five percent.”

The way the selection process works is the top five percent of the senior class holds a meeting where they nominate who they think should speak at graduation. Then, the nominations are organized and votes are cast for the top two candidates. This year, Smith received the most votes with Gunaraj coming in second.

Gunaraj stated, “Since Chris got the most votes he got second choice of where in the order he wanted to speak. Tamilia wanted the message and Chris chose to open so I get to give the closing speech.”

The speaker selection happened back on April 20 so the speakers were given roughly a month to write and prepare their speech. Some preparations the speakers have taken are to give their speeches to teachers to edit and even give smaller scale speeches to simulate the pressure.

Thomas added, “I chose to give a minor speech at Santan junior high to practice speaking for graduation.”

These speakers were given this prestigious assignment because they chose to make academics a priority in their lives. All seniors have put countless hours into their schooling over the years in order to get to this point. This year’s historic graduation at ASU will be a time of celebration. However, Gunaraj warns, “If no one laughs at the jokes in my speech, no one is getting their diploma.”

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About the Writer
Sawyer Del Fosse, Staff Reporter

Hi I'm Sawyer. I like to play sports and be active. I am a second year Staff Reporter writing about sports features and english/social studies.

1 Comment

One Response to “Top 5 percent prepares to speak at graduation”

  1. Craig saager on July 21st, 2018 6:27 PM

    Are these speech is recorded or available on YouTube? I have an incoming daughter that is a freshman and I would like her to see the speeches thank you

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Top 5 percent prepares to speak at graduation