Seniors Alexis Lofton, Romir Mohan and Kayla Giset close the chapter for the Class of 2024

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The halls and buildings of Heritage have been emptier this past week as seniors graduated Sunday, May 19. During the graduation ceremony, seniors threw their caps into the air, took one last picture with their families and school friends and listened to speeches by Seniors Alexis Lofton, Romir Mohan and Kayla Giset.

As the class president, Alexis Lofton was the first to speak. “It essentially opened graduation, greeted guests, and formally acknowledged the class of 2024,” she said. “Giving the speech felt amazing; it was an unforgettable opportunity. Being able to leave a lasting impression on my grade is something no one can take away.”

Lofton wanted the speech to be true to who she was even though she had certain guidelines to follow. “I used Shakespeare’s quote “we may know who we may be” and “one will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory,” Lofton said. “These stuck out to me because it really makes you sit and think about your career.”

Following Lofton, Romir Mohan gave his speech, where he compared high school to a relationship. Like a relationship, a high school journey is filled with discovering one’s identity, development and happy or sad times. Both can influence and shape a person and leave lasting memories.

“It was kind of difficult to write a speech about the American Heritage class when it is so diverse,” he said. “ Rather than focus on a single teacher or class, I wanted to bring up moments that we all shared as a class to demonstrate our resilience: like walking past the Deans and the extreme weather conditions; I really wanted to show that we have quite literally weathered every storm in our way.”

Lastly, Kayla Giset gave the reflection speech, summarizing the Class of 2024’s high school experience with inside jokes woven into it. “Graduation was a myriad of emotions,” Giset said. “I knew the sadness would kick in right away but there were also feelings of nostalgia and appreciation.”

Her speech was particularly impactful for Giset herself, as the largest crowd she had previously spoken to was a room filled with 2,500 people for Model United Nations. “This was probably double that and full of my peers and friends,” she said.

“I really liked Kayla’s speech because she went in-depth and talked about experiences specific to Heritage,” sophomore Meiling Ravelo said. “Her speech was funny, emotional and heartfelt all in one.”

Lofton, Giset, and Mohan’s speeches reminded the future seniors in the audience what high school is all about: making memories and appreciating those around you. “Going to graduation really did make me excited to graduate but also reminded me that one day I’ll be the one on stage, so I should slow down and enjoy what is left of my high school years,” Ravelo said.

Senior Kayla Giset gives her speech to the class of 2024. “Throwing our caps in the air was certainly the highlight of the entire ceremony,” Giset said. Senior Alexis Lofton found a key moment to be “waiting in the hallway for 2 hours,” waiting to start a new chapter for her life. (Photo/Kayla Giset) 

Senior Romir Mohan was also a Top Scholar, meaning he had one of the highest G.P.A’s in the grade. Out of all the top scholars, he was selected to give a speech representing the highest G.P.A. students. (Photo/Romir Mohan)

Kayra is a rising junior who is passionate about art and journalism. She loves expressing herself and the issues she cares about through her writing and artworks. She holds officer positions in Newspaper, Quill&Scroll, and the National Art Honor Society. When not studying, Kayra loves to read nonfiction books, hangout with her friends, cook healthy meals, listen to music while creating art, and spend time with her cat and family. She is looking forward to her junior year as she prepares for AP Art and new articles to write.

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