In her valedictory address, Nash detailed her difficulties with her driving road test, using her experience to illustrate the value of never giving up, which she said she learned at school.
“Long Beach has taught me to strive for better and not to give up in any facet of my life,” she said, comparing her own experience to moments when her classmates have “fallen and stood” together.
“Even in failure, we generally learn something: to reach again with success not far from our grasp,” she said. “Our learning throughout high school, in and out of the classroom, has taught us to both examine the reasons for our failures to rise up and correct them.”
Graduates said they looked forward to the future but would miss their classmates. “I’ll miss the people, and I’ll miss seeing them in the hallway every day,” said Ethan Armak, who will attend Nassau Community College in the fall and hopes to one day become a pediatrician.
“I’m glad it’s over — I’m ready to move on, but I know I’m going to miss a lot of people,” said Honor Society student Cathryna Hughes. “I had a good time and I made some good friends.”
Parents spoke glowingly of their children and their successes. “I’m overwhelmed with everything she’s accomplished,” said Cathryna’s mother, Kate Hughes. “Not just educationally, but also as the person she’s become. She’s beautiful inside and out, and I’m just thrilled that she’s my daughter, and I just couldn’t be more proud of her.”
Rosemary Leonetti contributed to this story.