St. St. Paul American School seniors say farewell to their high school years
May and June is graduation season — and we’ve been covering international high school graduations for the past two weeks. We bring you more every weekday for the rest of June. Check out our posts on each of the schools so far here.
St. Paul American School
The seniors at St. Paul finished their high school years at their graduation ceremony June 16. The thirteen students from 8 countries, dressed in black caps and gowns with white tassels and white scarves, proudly took their diplomas.
The stage was tastefully decorated with white, pink, and lavender bouquets. The school band performed live. It was a day of congratulations and celebrations. Students celebrated prom night on May 28.
For more pics from the St. Paul graduation, see our gallery here.
St. Paul’s valedictorian receives his diploma!
Valedictorian AG Turner delivered the graduating class speech. He has been in Beijing for a year and has been accepted to the University of British Columbia. Here is his speech:
Hans Zimmer, a German composer, said, ‘Why get up in the morning unless you’re going to have an adventure?’ So, having quoted that, I stand here this morning ready to step out into the world and I feel apprehensive and yet excited at the same time.
To my fellow graduates, this is the end of our school adventure and the beginning of – or another step in – our adventure of life. I hope you’re ready for it! While my time here at Saint Paul has been shorter than for many of you, I quickly came to feel part of the school community. S.P.A.S. has a unique learning and living environment with students (and teachers) from many different cultures coming together to complete our schooling in both English and Chinese. It is an innovative idea to give students not only the opportunity to become fluent in two (or more) languages, but also the chance to graduate with qualifications from both the American and Chinese education systems.
When I look back on my time here at S.P.A.S. some of the things that will make me smile are watching my sister play football against other schools and yelling every time the ball came near her, cheering for S.P.A.S on sports day, the length of time it took us to get to Mongolia and how cold it was when we arrived, teachers coming to check us in the dorms at night and Mr Gable saying ‘Okey Dokey’.
On behalf of everyone graduating today, I want to thank all the teachers who have helped, guided, cajoled, disciplined and even yelled at us. Each one of you has been a part of this adventure and none of us would be graduating today without your patience, wisdom and generosity. We will soon be living in many different countries but the lessons we have learnt here at the school, and in China, makes us unique and ready to participate in a multi-cultural world.
I don’t have a crystal ball and can’t say exactly what our lives will be like in the coming years, but I can say this: life is unpredictable – we never know what is headed our way. So live life to the fullest, make every day count and remember that mistakes are part of the learning process. A famous Spanish proverb sums it up best by saying, ‘A life lived in fear is a life half lived’.