Sandee Sez: Congrats to all the grads
- Sandi Ahenakew | July 29, 2016
This is the season for graduation, convocation and celebration. People of all ages from kindergarten to university are stepping up to collect their diplomas and degrees and many of the graduates are Aboriginal. It wasn’t that long ago when First Nations saw only one or two people graduating and now there are many; our will be brighter because of their determination. Proud parents, grandparents, friends and family members are walking around with their heads held high and about to pop the buttons off their shirts; they are so proud of their graduates’ achievements.
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Each educational achievement has been a milestone. In Kindergarten we saw our little ones becoming more independent and mostly happy to spend the half days at school. The next eight years will be challenging with many changes happening at the same time; classes are getting tougher, friendships trickier and then puberty strikes - parents hang on and encourage your children because before you can blink your children will be saying farewell to Grade 8.
High School is the next step which some people say it is the best time of their lives; while others disagree. High school can be difficult for most teenagers; when I went to high school in the 1980’s we dealt with racism, ignorance and don’t get me started on the bullying! It does sound like things have improved somewhat; the youth today are more open minded and have grown up with kids from all over the world they are more accepting of differences; maybe there is hope for our Aboriginal youth.
As the youth try to choose their post-secondary path think about what the great Dr. Seuss once said, "You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. You are the guy who'll decide where to go."
It was so good to see my friends children walk across the stage and receive their diplomas. I was so happy to be invited to attend an Adult campus graduation, these graduates overcame many obstacles to complete their classes and though there are tough times ahead as they decide what they want to do with their futures. University or trades; travel or work? Some young people know exactly what they want do, be it a doctor, dentist, plumber or chef. “Don’t worry if you don’t know what you want to do right now”, Steve Jobs said “If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know it when you find it.”
Get involved make a contribution do your part. This is an exciting time for you; there is lots of learning and adventures ahead of you. Enjoy the journey ahead; learn who you are and where you can make a difference. Life is short, enjoy it and be happy.” I’m so very proud of all the graduates. As they take their place in this world let’s encourage and support them; love and acknowledge them. “There are many challenges in our world right now. Sometimes it can be overwhelming there are social issues such as racism and inequity, environmental issues and economic problems. We can’t take them all on but we can do our part. We all have a responsibility to ensure that our communities are fair and just. Let’s all do our part to build and maintain safe and healthy communities. Change can happen but it takes time and dedication.
Advice for us all – enjoy your life. Spend time with your family and most importantly; love yourself. Remember your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. Have the courage to follow your intuition and heart. Helen Keller said, “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. And because I cannot do everything I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.” It is my hope that all of you reading will choose to take care of your health and make good choices for your futures and the futures of the graduates. I enjoy hearing from you. Contact me at Sandee Sez c/o Eagle Feather News, P.O. Box 924 Station Main, Saskatoon, SK S7K 3M4. Email firstname.lastname@example.org