Congratulations to the 2022 graduates who were farewelled this week at Girls Rock, their final assembly and year 12 Graduation. Having completed their schooling journey, they have concluded one of the most influential chapters in their lives.
The past six years have been a balancing act of competing influences; academics, high expectations, peer relationships, social media, physical and mental health, and the need for approval and belonging. Combined, these influences have shaped their morals, values and how they view the world as well as how they are seen by those around them.
Our departing year 12 students may be experiencing feelings of relief, sadness, uncertainty, anxiety, anticipation, or excitement about the immediate future ahead of them. The reality is, the future for all of us is uncertain. And it’s our strength in character, mindset and level of resilience that will influence our approach to challenges we are faced with and our future outcomes.
Often amongst the chaos of ‘life’ we don’t recognise or appreciate the inspirational moments. As we ‘go through the motions’ often wishing time away, hoping for and looking forward to the ‘next thing’ we fail to pause and value the moments that influence and inspire us.
I asked the year 12 students to pause and reflect on their time at Girls Grammar, to close their eyes and recognise those inspirational moments that may not have felt like it at the time but have in fact left a lasting impression on them. This could have been something a teacher or staff member had said to them, a memory with a friend or peer, and a time when they felt proud of themselves. If we were to do this too, each of our inspirational moments would be different. This is what makes each of us unique, however one thing remains the same, we have all experienced inspirational moments that stay with us throughout our lives, shaping us to be who we are today. As our newest graduates look towards the future, I encourage them to take the time and look for these moments in their lives. To quote Dr Seuss, 'sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory'.
Now, the time has come to close this door and push open the next. In the words of Senator Jane Hume who addressed our seniors at our final secondary assembly last month, “don’t continue to push too hard on the same door. No matter how hard you push, if it isn’t opening, it’s not the right door.” Each door is an experience. Some good, some not so, some planned and others a surprise. These experiences will continue to shape our graduates into the clever, confident and connected women they have already become. I hope that for each of them the ideal door opens at the perfect time.