LCO Chairman's Message to 2020 High School Graduates
What an unprecedented time we’re in!
Looking back at last Fall, when the school year started, no one would have ever guessed we’d be in the situation we’re in…national pandemic, stay at home orders, social distancing…yet here you are, you’ve done it, you’ve accomplished this milestone, and are receiving your High School Diploma!
Your graduation day marks a of day of celebration, joy, honor, and pride. Enjoy every minute of it. You certainly deserve it.
I am extremely proud of you all for reaching this milestone in your life. You’ve accomplished the monumental task of attending class, doing homework, studying, and hands-on exercises required to receive your diploma. And because of this worldwide pandemic, you’ve accomplished this while putting up with your families at home these past few months, probably a challenge in itself 😊
I have confidence in each of you that you will do the right thing, follow your hearts, and continue to strive for further success. Because of this novel pandemic, higher educational opportunities might only be available online, but the opportunities are still there. Maybe you decide college is not for you. That’s ok too. Maybe you’re thinking about joining the military. That’d be very honorable. Maybe you’d like to join the workforce immediately after graduation. That’s great too. We all learn by doing, and some people learn more by doing, not through books. You’re all unique in your own special way. Please follow your hearts and do the right thing.
Your (our) ancestors went through so much and fought so hard to get our People, our lands, our language, our traditions, and our businesses alive and thriving. Please continue to stand-up for what is right and what is ours.
I take this opportunity to say thank you to all who played a part in providing guidance and encouragement to each of you in reaching this milestone. Parents, Aunts, Uncles, Grandparents, Siblings, Caregivers, Friends, you’re all to be commended for your support. Likewise, I applaud the school administration, teachers, and support staff; without you, our graduates would not be accepting this honor today. Thank you for all you do for our students, our families, our communities. You’re all to be commended and we’re very happy to have you here in our communities and in our lives.
Graduates: you can, and I have faith you will, accomplish what you set out to do and be. You are our future…. future medical personnel, business managers, tradesmen, teachers, carpenters, front line workers, tribal leaders, and so much more. As we’ve learned all too suddenly, the phrase “essential employee” has a brand-new definition than what we originally thought. Every employee is essential, no matter the title.
In closing, I wish you all the absolute best. Please stay strong, follow your heart, make good choices, and take care of yourselves and one another. CONGRATULATIONS, I applaud you all, the graduating class of 2020.
Louis Taylor, Chairman
Lac Courte Oreilles Tribal Governing Board