With a graduating class of 131 students, the Class of 2019 from Bald Eagle Area High School made their way across the stage the morning of June 8 with smiles, tears, handshakes, high fives, fist bumps and attitudes ready for the next chapter of their lives. The commencement and graduation ceremony was held at Alumni Stadium.
They also held the annual tradition of recognizing the 50th anniversary graduating class dating back to 1969, which boasted this year's keynote speaker Tom Rodkey -- the second person in school history to act as the eagle mascot for the school.
Other speakers included Superintendent Jeff Miles, class President Cameron Cody, valedictorian Jakob Ream and salutatorian Katherine Haagen. Chelsea Butterworth gave the invocation.
Ream ends his high school career with a cumulative unweighted GPA of 4.0; Haagen has a 3.9. Both plan to attend Penn State in the fall -- Ream to study civil engineering and Haagen to study food sciences and Russian.
For many, graduating came with mixed emotions. For Drew Bucha, he said he was exited to start the next phase of his life with plans to attend Penn State to study wildlife and fisheries science. And like many of his peers, the best tips he had for underclassmen is "to make the most of high school."
Other words of advice
Wayne Boone: "Make sure you study hard to pass your midterms and final exams because they're hard. Work hard so you can get into school."
Kaleigh Cunningham: "If you're going through a hard time, don't let it ruin high school for you because odds are the next week it will be fine. Just push through."
Keith Greene: "Enjoy the ride because it goes faster than you think. Before you know it, you'll be graduating."
To hear from some graduates about their future plans, see this video: https://www.facebook.com/BaldEagleArea/videos/413690449488330/. To see the finale of 2019 graduation, see this video: https://www.facebook.com/BaldEagleArea/videos/453984005386860/.