June 11, 2013 — “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. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”
That’s what the late Apple Computer founder Steve Jobs said during his famous commencement address at Stanford University in 2005. His advice was offered to people crossing one of life’s major thresholds, but his words could apply to any of us … all the time.
Last week schools of many levels all across Lassen County celebrated the achievements of their students with graduation ceremonies. Readers can find a number of photographs of the celebrations in the pages of this week’s issue of the Lassen County Times.
Hundreds of high school seniors crossed perhaps the biggest threshold of their young lives so far as they graduated. To the students who flipped their tassels, the event and sense of accomplishment will be forever etched in their minds. Maybe it feels like it has taken a lifetime to get there; but, in reality, their lives are just beginning.
After observing these well-earned rites of passage, friends, family and the world will see the graduates in a different light — they will no longer be considered kids. They have officially become young adults, with all the respect and responsibility that comes with it.
The Class of 2013 shared hugs, laughter and even a few tears on that special day. They may not have realized it at the time, but their graduation ceremony is probably the last time all of them will be together. Ever.
They will head in different directions as they begin life’s journey in earnest. Some will travel, some start a career, some will enter college, some will join the military and some will take their time to ponder just exactly what they are supposed to do with the rest of their lives.
But they all will have one thing in common: They will be making their first major life decisions — the first of many in the years ahead — and some of those decisions will ultimately determine the direction their lives will take.
But if they ask just about anyone who has been there before for advice, they will probably say, “Take your time. What’s the rush? Enjoy yourself.” Believe it or not, many of us would like to be where you are right now; starting with a clean slate, a mind filled with dreams and the energy to chase them.
For many of the Class of 2013 those dreams will lead them on adventures far from Lassen County. This group of seniors surely contains our next generation of leaders. Hopefully, some of them will stay or return to their hometown to raise families and become leaders of their communities. Some will undoubtedly leave and never look back.
Regardless of the path they take, we hope it is the one they choose; the one they take because they have the courage to listen to their inner voice and chase their dreams.
The Lassen County Times congratulates the Class of 2013 and all the other graduates from across the county we call home. May all your dreams come true.
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