Brocton alumna tells class of 2013 to ‘break the norm’

By JIMMY MCCARTHY

OBSERVER Correspondent

BROCTON – The signature commencement tune played by the Brocton High School began, and into the gymnasium walked the 2013 graduates as cameras flashed. As they walked one at a time with smiles, parents cheered and hollered.

Principal Jason Delcamp began the ceremony by welcoming everyone in attendance for the special occasion to celebrate the great achievement. Delcamp, who is in his third year as principal, called the class of 2013 an outstanding bunch.

Brocton alumna Tammy Mangus took over and like all commencement speakers, gave the graduates a story and some advice. The message was plain and simple: break the norm. She gave out statistics about drop-out percentages and attaining degrees. She mentioned the fact that norms like these can be broken, for she broke them herself. Breaking the norms could not have been possible without the help and support from family, friends and teachers.

“Fight to break the norms. I have found success, and it is my responsibility to help others. Norms can have a tight grip on folks, but the struggles are worth it. Norms are something we should admire. Seize the day and shatter norms. If you do, you will judge yourself favorably,” she said.

Superintendent John Hertlein thanked Mangus and said that everyone at some point has broken some norm in some way. Hertlein gave gratitude to the community for their unwavering support in the school. In giving thanks to the board, he went on to say that hiring principal Delcamp three years ago was the best decision made. He, too, gave some advice to the group of graduates.

“Think beyond what you know,” said Hertlein. “The inventor of the ball point pen was a sculptor. The person who made the Dunlap tire was a veterinarian. Think outside the box.”

Salutatorian Ryan Nyweide, who will be heading to the University of Buffalo in the fall, congratulated his fellow classmates on their achievements. Valedictorian Ryan Mancuso, also heading to Buffalo, thanked parents, teachers and the board for their continuous assistance. He also gave his best to the rest of the class.

“We will all be successful one day. No matter where life takes us, we will use our memories to comfort us,” said Mancuso.

Once the diplomas and awards were in hand and the graduation confirmation was said, the class tossed their caps into the air. The crowd erupted with a round of applause and cheers. The celebration began – once they found where their caps landed.

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