Cox offers message to GCA graduates

Published 12:42 pm Friday, May 25, 2012

Cathy Cox speaks to the Grace Christian Academy Class of 2012

Don’t be afraid to change your future plans, don’t ever stop learning, and remember to do something that will help others — that was the message Young Harris College president and Bainbridge native Cathy Cox had for the Grace Christian Academy graduating class of 2012.

Cox, a former Secretary of State and 2006 gubernatorial candidate, was the guest speaker at Thursday’s ceremony, which saw 16 seniors earn their diplomas at the GCA gymnasium. She told the graduates that she changed her career aspiration several times — beginning as a journalist out of college, then becoming a lawyer before moving onto politics.

“There are still a lot of lessons to be learned,” she said. “I’ve come to embrace the idea that life is truly an ongoing process. Be prepared to change your plans. There are so many opportunities out there, but you have to be ready to take the jump.”

Cathy Cox

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Cox said it’s important to find a profession that offers personal enjoyment, but it’s even better when that job will also help others.

“Find ways in your life to have an impact,” she said. “Make your life be a force for good. Focusing only on what makes you happy will leave you with an empty feeling, very quickly.

“Your life will be so much more enjoyable when you give to others.”

In her address, valedictorian Christina Greene told her classmates how special it was to attend a Christian high school.

“No matter where we go, or what we do, we will always have a friend with us — God,” she said. “Never think that you’ve reached your full potential. Because when you think you have, you haven’t.

“For right now, let’s make the best of tonight. Here comes the rest of our lives.”

Grace Christian Academy Class of 2012

Kyle Harris and Abbey Smith each offered salutatory speeches, and Smith was also recognized as the school’s STAR student. Special music was provided by Mary Ann Adams, Bailey Bristow, Jocelyn Jacobs, Stephanie Mills and Caylin Walsingham.

The GCA Class of 2012 was Mary Ann Adams, Dalton Boyd, Bailey Bristow, Beth Carraway, Christina Greene, Katie Harrell, Kyle Harris, Emma Heard, Jocelyn Jacobs, Alex McLendon, Wyatt Mentry, Stephanie Mills, Harikishan Patel, Abbey Smith, Leah Smith and Caylin Walsingham.