On the morning of May 3, students, parents, teachers and school board leadership gathered at the Dawson County High School College and Career Academy to celebrate several graduating high school seniors signing commitments to pursue degrees in education.
During the ceremony, eight high school seniors signed their names on certificates indicating their intent to pursue a degree in the education field, sharing their goals, where they plan on going to college and what they hope to teach with the teachers, parents and faculty in attendance.
The keynote speaker at the signing ceremony was Superintendent Damon Gibbs, who encouraged the students to pursue their goals and to potentially come back to teach in the Dawson County School System.
“Go off, enjoy your college experience, and when you graduate with that degree please come back to Dawson County,” Gibbs said, proceeding to name several of the Dawson County Schools faculty and administrators who are themselves graduates of the school system.
He said that teaching, while it can be a challenging job, is also incredibly rewarding.
“We often make the mistake of assuming that the children we teach have home lives like ours, but many of them go through so much at home before they even walk through our doors,” Gibbs said. “Don’t underestimate the impact that you can make as a teacher in the 180 days that you have them.”
Gibbs, who will be retiring at the end of this semester, added that while 30 years in a teaching job may seem like a long time to a young teacher just starting into the field, he can tell the students from his own experience that it goes by quickly and is a rewarding position to hold.
Also during the ceremony, a representative from the Dawson County Retired Educators Association presented a scholarship to one of the students. While several of the students had applied and submitted impressive applications, the scholarship was given to Lexi Roland.
The graduating seniors who signed the future educator certificates during the ceremony were Lexi Roland, Jenna Hurst, Gracee Chastain, Mackenzie Armstrong, Mackenzie Stover, Abigail Santamaria-Ortiz, Jasmine Mote and Karley Hamby. A ninth senior, Anna Lee, also intends to pursue an education degree but was unable to attend the signing ceremony.