Ellsworth High School Valedictorian Christa Ouellette addressed her classmates at the school’s graduation on Friday evening, admitting that she is “afraid of the future” but thankful for having gone to school with “an intelligent, talented and focused group of people.” ELLSWORTH AMERICAN PHOTO BY KATE COUGH

King offers words of wisdom to EHS grads

ELLSWORTH — Valedictorian Christa Ouellette expressed some disappointment in her speech at the 2018 Ellsworth High School graduation on Friday evening.

“At this point I thought I’d be taller and a better driver,” quipped Ouellette, who graduated with a 100.15 grade point average.

Salutatorian Fiona Tucker offered a piece of advice for her fellow classmates. “Choose your words carefully, and remember that words matter,” said Tucker, who graduated with a 100.09 grade point average.

Principal Dan Clifford recognized the numerous athletic achievements of the class, including state champions in swimming and wrestling. Ellsworth Middle School Principal Jim Newett, who is retiring this month after 29 years on the job, also was recognized by Clifford and received a standing ovation.

Clifford introduced the class to the chosen speaker, U.S. Sen. Angus King (I-Maine).

U.S. Sen. Angus King (I-Maine) gave Ellsworth High School students ten pieces of advice on Friday evening. “See that you regret the things you’ve done, and not the things you didn’t do,” said King.

“These are our seniors,” Clifford said. “I promise you they’re going to do great things in whatever community they live in.”

Ben Tracy, the student speaker chosen by his classmates, spoke of learning to “fight through hardships,” such as calculus, and how “the feeling of being part of a team isn’t like any other feeling.”

Clifford recounted individual anecdotes about students, and noted that the class had taken 165 classes for college credit and offered up 6,120 hours of their time for community service. Clifford recognized the students who will join the armed forces. Graduates were listed as planning careers in a variety of fields, from engineering and forensic psychology to nursing, among others.

King, who addressed the graduates, gave 10 pieces of advice.

“There’s a multimillion-dollar industry putting erasers on pencils,” King joked. “It’s OK to make mistakes.”

Among his other words of wisdom:

“Treat each job you have as the most important job you’ll ever have” and “when in doubt, don’t get married.” King also spoke of the importance of a positive attitude, not giving up, and of honesty, “even if it hurts,” and the fallacy of a “geographic or a material cure.”

“You’ve got to make it work where you are,” King advised.

His final piece of advice?

“Value your family and friends and never let them down.”

More photos: https://ellsworthamerican.smugmug.com/The-Ellsworth-American/School/EHS-Class-of-2018

Kate Cough

Kate Cough

Kate covers the city of Ellsworth, including the Ellsworth School Department and the city police beat, as well as the towns of Amherst, Aurora, Eastbrook, Great Pond, Mariaville, Osborn, Otis and Waltham. She lives in Southwest Harbor and welcomes story tips and ideas. She can be reached at [email protected]

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