Well thank you all for being here tonight to celebrate the accomplishment of the new graduates. It really means a lot to me to be able to stand before you today and reinforce something we already know; that when you set a goal and you do the due diligence, if you commit yourself every single day, you will prosper.
In that process, I’m going to be honest, some days will be difficult. Some days will be exhausting, some days due to other obstacles life throws at you, you will be discouraged. But never allow yourself to be distracted and NEVER consider throwing in the towel when things get difficult.
I am going to make this a little more personal. Somedays things were difficult (for me). Some days I was exhausted. Some days being in custody at Elmwood Correctional Facility was discouraging. But I never allowed myself to get distracted. I never even entertained the idea of throwing in the towel. I continued to push forward. I continue to strive and continued to persevere. Webster’s definition of persevere is “continue despite difficulties; despite discouragement”. I have a desire to succeed. I have a desire to obtain a higher education. I have the burning desire to be the first in my family to go to college. And I know I can do it because Miss Laura said I can and she doesn’t lie. I was blesses with an exceptional support group. I was inspired everyday. I really appreciate the compassion that was shown to me and all the encouraging words when I needed them the most. I looked all over my dictionary to try to find a word that expressed how much gratitude that I have for my teachers. I could not find one so I’m just going to keep it simple and say thank you.
Miss Denise, thank you for all your patience and kind words and your smiles. Ms. Laura, thank you for always going above and beyond for your students. Both of you give me a new positive perspective on life and for that I’m forever grateful. My mom and dad never had the opportunity to see me wear a cap and grown and walk across a stage so it feels amazing to have them here tonight and to see the joy that it brings them. I want you both to know that this is not the last time you will see me walk a stage, next time will be at De Anza College and after that you will see me graduate in a College of my choosing because I am going to be an honor roll student. I’m going to do my best despite difficulty – despite discouragement.
And I implore everyone here to do the same. Graduation is not the end, it’s the beginning, the beginning of a new life that you can be proud of. My name is Breon Brazier and these are the new graduates; and we are here today because we are determined to succeed. Thank you.