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  • Staff photo by Don Himsel

    A graduate flashes a thumbs up at Milford High School's graduation ceremony on their football field Saturday, June 18, 2011
  • Staff photo by Don Himsel

    A graduate smiles after leaving the stage with her diploma at Milford High School's commencement ceremony on their football field Saturday, June 18, 2011
  • Staff photo by DON HIMSEL A Milford High School senior receives a kiss during graduation ceremonies on Saturday, June 18.
  • Staff photo by Don Himsel

    A graduate mugs for a camera at Milford High School's graduation ceremony Saturday, June 18, 2011
  • Staff photo by Don Himsel

    Scott Audet gets high fives at Milford High School's graduation ceremony on their football field Saturday, June 18, 2011
Sunday, June 19, 2011

Milford Class of 2011 will follow their own path

On the sidewalk outside of the Milford High School track field, the asphalt is spray-painted with the message “Seniors, how do you feel!?”

Obviously, the 212 seniors of Milford High School can feel proud of their accomplishments as the graduating Class of 2011. Saturday morning, as they entered the track field in their processional to “Pomp and Circumstance,” the graduating seniors were greeted by hundreds of friends and family members who filled the bleachers with their handmade signs, cheers, applause and blaring air horns. The sense of accomplishment and school spirit was palpable in the air.

Shema Rubdi, class president, quoted Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” She encouraged her fellow graduates to “be different and be independent.”

In her address, she reflected on how often her family pressured her into becoming a doctor after school, and how eventually she made the decision for herself to pursue a career in medicine as “making her own trail.”

“I know we have the potential to be leaders in our own life,” she said.

“Our education these past four years are more than our knowledge,” said class Salutatorian Nakita Gaetane VanBiene in her address. “Our education has become a journey towards becoming better students, better global citizens and better people.” VanBiene will be pursuing a dual degree in pre-med and history at Williams College in Massachusetts.

Ashley Wheeler, class valedictorian, reflected on the graduating seniors’ past memories, present achievements and future goals in her address. She recollected beloved childhood cartoons such as “Rugrats,” “Hey Arnold” and “Doug” and the lessons learned from them. She acknowledged the accomplishments of her peers during their four years in high school - the boys’ basketball back-to-back state championships and 20 student winners of the NAIA athlete scholarships. “We are going to be the generation that changes the world,” Wheeler said, noting that her class is made up of the next generation of lawyers, engineers, teachers and entrepreneurs. Wheeler will be enrolled at MIT to study environmental engineering in the fall.

Dr. Bradford Craven, school principal, gave one of the closing speeches to the graduating seniors. Among his many messages, he used the example of watching his own young children grow up to illustrate the fact that “time does fly.”

“Use your time however it is perceived by you- wisely,” he told the seniors.

After all 212 seniors were presented with their diplomas, they turned their tassels and tossed their caps in the air.

“Congratulations, Class of 2011,” Wheeler said proudly. “We did it!”

Alexandra Churchill can be reached at 594-6411 or achurchill@nashuatelegraph.com.