American Leadership Academy holds commencement exercises for Class of 2017

One hundred and nineteen students were honored as graduates of American Leadership Academy during commencement exercises on May 24.
One hundred and nineteen students were honored as graduates of American Leadership Academy during commencement exercises on May 24.

American Leadership Academy in Spanish Fork held its commencement exercises on May 24. This year, the graduates included 116 seniors and three juniors. Seven of them have already earned their associate’s degree from Utah Valley University, another six have earned certificates from MATC and three more have completed CNA training.

The ceremony featured addresses given by science teacher Brian Anderson, Salutatorian Jonathan Tanner, Valedictorian Erickson Blair and Senior Class President Alexis Wride.

Executive Director Richard Morley provided some humor by threatening to administer one more quiz that the students had to pass before they could receive their diplomas.

Assistant Principal Kimberly Searle, who conducted the ceremony, said afterward, “It was really impressive to hear their names read and then the brief outline of their future plans. All of them have terrific plans!”

True, the majority are already enrolled in college. Some have mission calls, some are leaving to serve in the military, but almost all of them indicated they knew what they wanted to do in the future.

A poignant moment came when the announcer reading the names suddenly went quiet. The procession stopped. The audience grew concerned. Then, Tim Becker, an AP English teacher, cleared his throat and said, “It’s not that I can’t pronounce their names ….” Then came a few chuckles as the audience realized Becker was about to read the names of his own two sons. After he got his composure, he introduced them, read the brief statement of their future plans, and added, “and they love their mom and dad, too.”

Congratulations graduates. As your science teacher Mr. Anderson said at the end of his remarks, “We salute you!”