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Becoming good people

Graduation season is over, and more than 1,000 young people who graduated from Suffolk schools this year have a lot to look forward to.

More than 900 students graduated Saturday, as Ted Constant Convocation Center hosted the three Suffolk public high schools — King’s Fork, Lakeland and Nansemond River.

On June 1, a small class of eight graduated from Suffolk Christian Academy, and on May 24, Nansemond-Suffolk Academy graduated 68.

By our count, the total number of graduates in Suffolk this year was precisely 1,002.

Graduation season is a time for celebration. This graduation season has seen hundreds of mortarboards flying through the air, hundreds of parties hosted by happy families and countless happy tears and sighs of relief from happy seniors who probably thought this day would never come.

We couldn’t be happier for every single one of the 1,002 graduates in Suffolk this year and rejoice with them in their accomplishments.

Through all of their life experiences in the approximately 18 years they have been on this earth, these graduates have learned a lot. They learned not only academic subjects in their classrooms but also have learned through their athletics, their clubs and their community service. They have learned with their family, their friends, their jobs, their church and more.

These 1,002 graduating seniors have learned kindness, teamwork, social skills, empathy, confidence, resiliency, leadership, creativity, respect, adaptability, problem-solving, resourcefulness, communication, observation, enthusiasm, dedication and innumerable other soft skills that will serve them well.

These 1,002 amazing graduates are moving on to the workforce, to college, to trade schools and to the military. We are confident they will apply everything they have learned here in Suffolk — both inside the classroom and out of it — to succeed in these endeavors. They are well prepared to be good students, good citizens, good teammates, good friends and good employees. Many of them will use these skills to go on to become good leaders, good entrepreneurs and, eventually, good parents.

Most importantly, with the way our world is today, we have full confidence that these 1,002 graduates will put these skills to work as good people. We look forward to watching them make a positive difference in our world.