Good evening ladies and gentleman

Good evening ladies and gentleman, teachers, parents, and students. My name is Jessica Ellaway. Some of you may remember me from the graduating class of 2016, sitting in this same juncture, in the same hall, and listening to the same assembly as you are today (except this one people actually sing the anthem). I’m here today to congratulate these students and offer you my upmost appreciation. Together you are being unchained from the shackles and set free into the outside world, this is your day, this is your remark and this is your address.
We often forget, or take for granted the most obvious things around us. We often find it difficult to stay aware of what’s happening in the world around us. We are each tiny fragments of life on a rock in the universe. Born to dream, born to experience, born to live. Our stories are stairs that make it easier for us to touch the stars, to push through the pain, to climb, and to grab what we most desire.
Some of you feel ready, some of you feel scared, and some don’t know what to feel. But like they say in the 2015 film Man Up, ‘just put yourself out there, and take chances, and engage with life’. I remember walking into Elanora high school in grade 8; it was the beginning of another story. Feeling terrified of the next 5 years to come my journey hit a rock in the pavement. I had teachers that made me cry, friendship issues, and I was still the same quiet little girl adjusting to the bigger community around her. I was a lonely blossom in a patch of broken promises being blown 100 different directions.
During my time at school I remember reading ‘The colour Purple’ for my year 11 English assignment. A novel about an uneducated fourteen year old black girl, Celia. Raped and Impregnated twice by her step father with both babies presumably killed in the woods. After years of being controlled, raped and abused by her stepfather and husband, Celia knows she deserves better and finds the courage to escape and reunited with her sister and children and even pursue her lifelong dream for a career in a dressmaking business. It is incredibly enlightening to fully appreciate and identify that anything you set your mind to is possible and achievable. Humans contain the aspects and the capability to follow their passion through independence and being strong minded in their decisions even if others disagree. Because standing firm with your decisions that you feel is right shapes your identity and generates opportunity and future success. The reason for all the blessings in life is a result of the decision to be courageous.
Majority of people choose their paths out of fear and digression. Take my dad for example; he wanted to be a musician, but he believed he wasn’t talented enough to make a career out of his talent. So he therefore made the conservative choice to become a tradesman, a job he believed was safe and secure. But ‘Talent comes from everywhere, but having something to say and a way to say it so that people listen to it, that’s a whole other bag. And unless you get out and you try to do it, you’ll never know, and that’s just the truth’. This Quote from the 2018 movie ‘A Star is born’ communicates that the purpose of life is to say something people want to hear, and it doesn’t matter how long people listen for or why they are in the first places, you’ve got to grab it and don’t apologize just say what you want to tell them. You need to keep reaching for the stars and connect the dots until you see the constellation and reach what you most desire.
Leaving high school I was an emotional jigsaw puzzle trying to piece myself back together, and for the first time in a while, I put myself out there and I took a chance, and that one decision has sculpted my life to end up standing in front of you today. So if there’s one piece of advice I offer from this speech, it’s that we are comets ready to make our mark on this world, just put yourself out there and take chances, and see change as an opportunity for greatness.