EASTON, Maine — The 2019 class of Easton High School parted ways Friday evening with 14 graduates receiving diplomas from one of Aroostook County’s smallest and highest achieving school districts.
Valedictorian Joshua Rooney welcomed the crowd gathered in “The Barn,” the high school’s gymnasium, as he spoke to his fellow students’ hankering for summer after a long winter and more than a decade in school.
“I think by now, almost all of us have caught the “senioritis” disease, but today is the last day you’ll suffer the side effects. Many of you have been here for a long time.”
As a student who transferred to Easton from the Cornerstone Christian Academy school that closed in 2017, Rooney said he is a relative newcomer to Easton with a “different perspective.”
“I would describe the beginning of my experience at Easton Jr.-Sr. high school as change: a change that was at first uncomfortable, but sparked growth; a change that brought opportunity, opportunity for academic growth, a new environment and new relationships.”
“I was welcomed with plenty of kindness and acceptance into my class family. I was welcomed into what would also be a mass of new and memorable experiences.”
Rooney said he was thankful for support from family, friends, faculty and staff, and that he was looking forward to he and his classmates moving into the future.
“We enter the next step of shaping and transformation that defines our future. We’ve entered a time where we are going to have to take care of responsibilities, laundry, dishes, cleaning … let alone learning how to cook! It’s time to jump further out of our comfort zone, and that’s the place we should be. That zone is where we see the most growth.”
He went on. “Here I stand before future law enforcement, business owners, engineers, nurses, military service, all people who have the potential to be successful in accomplishing their goals,” he said. “My advice to you: “Don’t be afraid to jump into the uncomfortable zone or try something new, even if that means getting your hands dirty. Just because you graduated doesn’t mean that you’ve finished your education.”
Rooney plans to study theological studies at Regent University Virginia Beach. Among the other graduates, Joseph Anderson plans to study computer science at the University of Maine Fort Kent. Christopher Busse is joining the United States Marine Corps Infantry. Riley Caron is entering the workforce. Isaac Currier plans to study diesel hydraulics at Northern Maine Community College. Hunter Dudley is joining the United States Air Force.
Abigail Dionne plans to study nursing at the University of Maine Fort Kent. Carson Flewelling plans to study business administration at NMCC. Alexander Harvath plans to study recreation and tourism at the University of Maine Machias. Olivia Lamoreau is planning to study psychology at the University of Maine Presque Isle.
Wilder Mitchell is joining the Presque Isle Fire Department as a firefighter and emergency medical technician. Shelliese Mullen plans to study early childhood education at NMCC. Emily Thompson plans to study rehabilitation services at the University of Maine Farmington. Isaac Wipperman plans to study criminal justice at the University of Maine Presque Isle.