EXPECT ‘AN INCREDIBLE JOURNEY’
To North Arlington High School graduates:
I want to congratulate you on your graduation from high school. You have put in a lot of work to reach your goal and you should be proud of your achievements.
You are about to embark on an incredible journey filled with unforeseeable twists and turns. Some of you will travel far from North Arlington and take on challenges you never imagined you could. Some of you will stay close to home and become part of the fabric of your community. Some will go to college, or trade school; others are destined for the U.S. military. No one path is right for everyone so follow the path that suits you best.
Choosing the right path in life in not always easy.
Be true to your principles; never forget who you are or where you came from. You don’t know it now, but a big part of who you will become someday is already embedded deep inside of you.
I’m not going to tell you to go out and change the world, because most of you will do that in small, almost imperceptible ways that you will come to appreciate only decades from now.
Be honest and forthright. Try new things; test yourself. You will make mistakes, and that’s okay; you will learn more from your mistakes than from your accomplishments. Don’t be afraid to work hard. Don’t sell yourself short and don’t listen to your critics.
Most of all, I implore you to be good citizens. America is at a very pivotal time in its history. We need people of good character to step forward and become doers in our communities, not takers. America has plenty of critics and naysayers. What we need are people willing to roll up their sleeves and make positive contributions to their town, their state and their country.
You are lucky to live in the greatest nation on earth – one that allows you to follow your dreams and set your own measure of success. But remember: America didn’t become great by accident. Many men and women worked very hard to give you the inheritance of political liberty and personal freedom that you now enjoy. Appreciate what this country has to offer and find a way to make it better. If you can do that, you will be a success.
Mayor Peter C. Massa