Trevor Shibley took an informal poll in helping prepare his graduation speech.
One of Hanford High School’s two salutatorians, he asked friends for their take on what makes the Richland school special.
The common theme, he told the crowd Friday during the Class of 2015’s graduation ceremony at the Toyota Center in Kennewick, was the people who make up the school.
“This school is filled with passionate, authentic, creative, motivated students, teachers, staff and administrators,” he said.
And he offered them his thanks.
Gratitude was a theme of the afternoon. Teachers, parents and friends all earned shout-outs.
Wisdom was flowing, too.
Nathan Mars, one of nine valedictorians, urged his classmates to continue to work hard and achieve, but also to take time to count their blessings in life. The other valedictorians are Aydin Akyol, Shanta Katipamula, Hinako Kawabe, Whitney Kieffer, Peter Li, Steven Quadrel, Srinithi Suresh and Sean Thompson.
Tiffany Liu, the class’ salutatorian along with Shibley, urged her classmates to have confidence in themselves.
“Be victorious and so extremely excited about all the incredible things that you will accomplish,” she said. “It’s going to be amazing.”