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Photo by Lisa Carolin. Chelsea High School Class of 2017 assembles.

By Lisa Carolin

Chelsea High School’s Class of 2017 will be remembered for many reasons, two of which were mentioned during the graduation ceremony on Sunday, June 4 by both student speaker Senior Zia Pentescu and high school Principal Michael Kapolka.

“This class will be remembered not only for their academic achievements, but for their social and civic endeavors,” said Kapolka. “Programs such as  #WhyyouMatter and the Alumni Arbor campaign not only strengthened our school climate, but [also] they brought together and connected generations of Bulldogs throughout the Chelsea Community.”

Photo by Lisa Carolin.

Pentescu told the audience, “We are not people who sit back and wait for things to change. I’m sure we’ll continue to change things for the better.”

There were 197 students in the Class of 2017, 85 percent of whom are going on to college in the fall. Senior Lee Argir, who will be attending the Great Lakes Maritime Academy, also spoke during the ceremony.

“It’s time to grow up,” he said. “Hold the door open for old ladies and proofread your Twitter posts.”

Chelsea School District Superintendent Julie Helber spoke of her own background and discovering her passion for education late in college.

“We want a lot from you,” said Helber to the seniors. “What matters is what you want. Find your life’s passion and choose to be happy. Everything else will follow.”

Photo by Lisa Carolin.

Kapolka recognized 73 students from the graduating class for their grade point average of 3.667 or higher. He also recognized students for music, theater, art, and athletic accomplishments.

He asked everyone to remember Samantha Gillman, a member of the class who passed away last year at the age of 17.

Kapolka shared a story about speaking with his 92-year-old grandmother, a graduate of the CHS Class of 1943. His grandmother told him to share this with the Class of 2017: “You are part of a chain that is unbreakable.”

Photo by Lisa Carolin. Class of 2017.

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