On June 4, 703 Blaine High School seniors graduated in the school’s Fieldhouse gym.
Parents, family members and seniors packed the gym on June 4. The ceremony had been scheduled for the high school’s track field but was moved indoors due to severe weather.
The graduation ceremony started with a presentation of colors while seniors in the Concert Choir sang the National Anthem. Half a dozen Blaine High School American Sign Language students signed the National Anthem and throughout the ceremony.
Senior class speaker Oluwatimilehin “Tim” Mafe talked about conforming by hiding his birth name.
“Why did I conform and follow everyone else’s way of life even if it isn’t me?” Mafe asked. “We all do this, and high school is one of the easiest places it affects you, which is conforming to the status quo to flourish. ... As 18 year olds we are about to start a new chapter in our lives that requires the initiative to want to do something, want to better yourself. ... We’re at a time in society where we only value validation from others and their actions towards us. We conform to the expectations of others ... but the problem is this class is different. We are different. We have the chance to start fresh and to create a plan accustomed to our purpose. ... Our graduating class needs to embrace our creativity, our social freedom and our differences instead of shaming it. We all as graduates have a purpose.”
Afterward Anoka-Hennepin School District Superintendent David Law spoke to seniors.
“Others might not believe in you yet, but we believe that you will do great when you move forward,” Law said. “Congratulations class of 2019!”
Seniors nominated science teacher Tim Riordan to say farewell to their class.
“On this graduation day it doesn’t matter about what you have achieved, but what you do with it,” Riordan said. “Nor does it matter what you have failed to achieve. It’s what you do next that counts.”
Next, seniors turned their tassels to the left as they were presented their diplomas. This year 127 students graduated with honors, 110 with high honors and 184 from the Blaine High School Center for Engineering, Mathematics and Science.
Lastly, senior Caleb Bartels gave the class a message about kindness and afterward said, “Have a great future everyone.”
The Blaine High School class of 2019 then tossed their caps in the air in celebration.
To watch the full graduation ceremony, visit North Metro TV’s website at bit.Ly/31a9Nbr.