By Andrew Cluley Communications Specialist
Zingerman’s co-founder Paul Saginaw told the 86 graduates in the Pathways to Success Academic Campus and Ann Arbor Adult Education class of 2016 that they should be proud of what they’ve accomplished, but also know they can go much, much further. Saginaw was the guest speaker at Pathways second Commencement Ceremony last night at Pease Auditorium.
Saginaw says Pathways class of 2016 has already overcome more obstacles than many people face. He urged the graduates to continue to respond in a positive manner when facing challenges. “No one can take away your freedom to choose how you will react,” says Saginaw. “That is yours, and yours alone, and if you continue to make the kind of good choices that got you here to graduation, you will continue to forge your own destiny.”
Saginaw offered the class of 2016 four tips to keep in mind to ensure success. He says they should write a plan of what they hope to accomplish and take their passion seriously. Saginaw also encouraged the graduates to put themselves in a good environment by surrounding themselves with people that are going places and to find a mentor to speed learning and stay on track.
Graduate Aaron Frazier thanked Principal Tyrone Weeks and the staff at Pathways for helping him complete high school. Weeks gave him confidence by saying he saw potential in him, and that confidence grew when he started having success. “When first quarter concluded I had a 3.6, now from my past experience at Huron seeing anything over a 3.0 shocked me,” Frazier says. “Once I got that GPA I pretty much figured, why stop here? I can keep getting this and making myself better.”
School Board President Deb Mexicotte encouraged the graduates to take a special type of pride in their accomplishment. ”Pride that’s linked to actual accomplishment, Pride that’s linked to your relationship to others, and the pride that you feel when you look at those that supported you all these years, that’s reciprocal pride,” Mexicotte said. “That’s pride in service to something, and that’s the kind of pride that I want you to take forth from this day. That feeling you have of pride in yourself, I want you to take that feeling forward and think about how it relates to you serving your community, your relationships, your friends, your family, and yourselves because that’s the best kind of pride.”