Warrick County seniors are nearing the end of their high school careers as graduation approaches.
Tecumseh High School's graduation will take place at 7 p.m. Friday, May 18; Boonville High School's graduation will take place at 9 a.m. Saturday, May 19; Castle High School's graduation will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 19; and the Warrick Education Center's graduation occurs on Tuesday, May 22, at 6 p.m.
THS principal Josh Susott said this is his fourth year as principal, and his fourth year getting to watch his students graduate.
"So this class is special to me because they are the first class that I've had every year they've been in high school," he said. "This class has had numerous successes for THS in academics and athletics. They are a great group of students."
Both BHS principal Mike Whitten and WEC principal Drew Gerth had nothing but kind things to say about their respective graduates as well.
"They have been a great group of young men and women to watch grow and achieve over the past four years," Whitten said.
"They are a hardworking group of young people that will accomplish great things in life," Gerth said of his class.
Susott said it is always a blessing to be able to shake the hands individually of the students as he congratulates them on their accomplishments.
"One of the great things about being at a small school is that I know each and every student," he said. "I know the obstacles many of our students have had to overcome to graduate high school."
Whitten said he loves the moment where he announces the last graduate of the ceremony.
"And seeing the crowd of 3,000 plus give them a standing ovation," he said.
Gerth said watching the sense of accomplishment on the student's faces gives him joy.
"Most of our students have had some challenges to get to this day," he said. "It is always great when their family can celebrate this accomplishment with them."
Susott said graduating from high school is an honor and takes a lot of hard work and family support.
"Seeing a packed gymnasium adds to the excitement of graduation," he said. "Luckily, we have very strong community support and normally, we have a great crowd for our commencement service."
Whitten said graduation is a true recognition of the time and energy the students put into making their dreams a reality.
"We still have some students who are the first to graduate high school in their family," he said.
Whitten said he thinks BHS has a very special graduation.
"Over 70 faculty and staff give up their personal time to work the event for our students," he said. "That says a lot about the commitment and dedication of our staff to our young people."
Susott said he wants to wish all of Tecumseh's 2018 graduates good luck in whatever they pursue.
"A diploma from the Warrick County School Corporation is a great stepping stone for the workforce," he said, "military, or post-secondary education."
Susott said he encourages the students to stay in contact with the school after they graduate.
"We have a great alumni base at Tecumseh," he said, "and our staff love to see and hear about the amazing things our graduates are accomplishing in life."