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Medomak Valley marks 50th commencement with class of 2018

By Beth A. Birmingham | Jun 04, 2018
Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham Graduates of the Class of 2018 at Medomak Valley High School take a few last photos before commencement June 6 in Waldoboro. From left are Somerset Ganz, Rosamond Hickey, Hailie Brown, Danica Juntura, and Abigail Williams with photographer Hallie Kunesh.

Waldoboro — The Class of 2018 made its final walk through the halls at Medomak Valley High School on its way to the school's 50th commencement ceremony June 6.

Addresses were given by Senior Class President Brent Stewart, Salutatorian Adrianna Wadsworth and Valedictorian Danica Juntura.

Stewart told his classmates they should feel a sense of pride at completing the first of many steps in their lives.

"Over the past four years, we have spent roughly 700 days of school together ... we have all found a passion ... preparing ourselves to be leaders in the community," he said.

"As we sit in these seats tonight, let us look back on all the great times we had together and be thankful and ready for the future," Stewart said.

Wadsworth said high school is not measured by the people one dated or the grades one received, instead "it is measured in the experiences we choose to hold onto and the lessons we've learned."

She called out the teachers who pushed them to succeed and went above and beyond their teacher responsibilities to take on the role of therapists in times of mental breakdowns.

"We now have to push ourselves," she said. "Do what makes you happy, because in reality, we are all still figuring it out. It may take us a while, but if there's one thing we've learned, it is that we all 'have a place to be' as we are kindly reminded by Mrs. Philbrook and Mrs. Pease while occasionally wandering aimlessly."

"One day we'll find that yellow pass that grants us our destination," Wadsworth concluded.

Juntura said that despite frustrations, setbacks and a lot of criticism "as is the nature of our class, we took it all in stride and moved forward ... and that's life."

As a lover of "Marvel" comics and movies, Juntura compared the adventures of superheroes to her fellow classmates. "We have qualities and traits that deem us as one [superhero]," she said.

"Once we graduate, we are able to break free from the restrictions of standards and expectations and finally apply ourselves to what we are truly capable of," she said. "We are not always what people expect and we cannot always do what they want us to do, just like these Marvel heroes. But that shouldn't stop us from doing the right thing."

Juntura concluded with words from Doctor Strange, "Do you know what is the greatest gift anyone can receive in this lifetime? The greatest gift we can receive is to have the chance, just once in our lives, to make a difference."

"And class of 2018, I know we'll all make a significant difference, because we have the power to. And that difference, whatever it may be, I hope it'll help this world be a little better because 'with great power comes great responsibility,'" she said.

The evening's address was given by music teacher Peter Stuart.

"Find your passion and be open to all possibilities," he said, as he explained how songs make up the soundtrack of life. "It's time for you to create the soundtrack of you life ... dream and allow that dream to be big," he said.

Of the 107 graduates, 64 will be furthering their education, five will be entering the armed forces, and 38 will head directly into the workforce.

A total of  $608,000 in local and other scholarships was given out between Class Day and graduation.

Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at

Medomak Valley Commencement 2018
Instructor and special guest speaker, Peter Stuart, leads the Medomak Valley High School band during the 50th commencement June 6. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
Superintendent Steve Nolan congratulates a student during the 50th commencement exercise at MVHS June 6. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
MVHS graduates line up for one of the $608,000 in scholarships given out June 6. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
Behind the scenes, longtime teacher Neil Lash interacts with graduates at MVHS's 50th commencement exercise June 6 in Waldoboro. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
MVHS graduates, from left, Myles Frederick, Nicholle Risch, and Nicholas Blastow proudly stand after receiving their graduation diplomas June 6. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
Proud mom Ronda Anderson poses with her son Wade Anderson. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
Some cap messages ... (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
MVHS seniors Raymond Brann and Caloum Bogard take a final pose before the commencement service begins June 6. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
Autumn Sproul and Rebekah Marks pose after graduating from MVHS June 6. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
Teacher Rebecca Lash and MVHS graduate Haley Wyllie enjoy a moment following the 50th commencement exercise June 6. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
Much deserved congrats ... (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
Autumn Sproul gets a special congratulations from niece Ava Owen following MVHS's 50th commencement exercise June 6. (Photo by: Beth A. Birmingham)
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