Valedictorians 2020

Dear graduating class of 2020: it’s not optimal, the way your grad year has ended, but we did our best to make sure you experienced the essential part, where you cross the stage with the support and applause of your family. A video for each school will be posted, but we want to celebrate your valedictorians, because their words represent your experience as you graduate into the next stage of your lives. Congratulations on your achievements.

Valleyview: Sydney Krueger

Sydney Krueger says for the class of 2020, the next few years will be some of the best ‘for making mistakes and creating memories,’ to ‘do anything and be anything you want to be.’ She will attend TRU in the fall and she plans to become a teacher. 

TREC: Kelsey Lentsch and Jaron Sellaras

Kelsey Lentsch spoke about her generation’s situation – being born as the world was grieving 911 and now graduating amid global grief – and her belief they are strong enough to overcome these difficult times.

Valedictorian Jaron Sellaras speech delivered in text.

Four Directions: Alana Dick

Alana Dick says Four Directions School was a great experience, and she credits teacher Jordan Smith with much of her success. She is proud of her class and 'beyond happy' to be graduating alongside them.

Logan Lake: Samantha Holmstrup

Samantha Holmstrup shares memories, talks about the three most important things she learned in high school, and gives her take on why it's okay to make mistakes as she and her classmates head into the world.

Westsyde: Kadie Gillies

Kadie Gillies congratulates her fellow grads for being part of a unique grad class and not just because their mascot is the fiercest (The Whunda). She says she will miss the little things, and she hopes everyone will still be friends when they meet again after heading out on all their separate paths.

Kamloops School of the Arts: Sydney Ramage

Sydney Ramage says the Class of 2020 will always share a unique sense of history quite apart from any other graduating class. She shares memories and explains how delivering this speech was made easier because she got to deliver it in 'the time of COVID'.

Aboriginal Education: Grace Payne

Grace Payne speaks about the power of beginnings and endings, the resilience of the Class of 2020, and the need for strong Aboriginal leaders in her generation. 

Aboriginal Education: Satinka Manuel

Satinka Manuel shares a Richard Wagamese quote about ceremonies functioning as one song, bringing healing through common purpose, saying its message is especially relevant. She also offers her class a way to see the next chapter of their lives.

NorKam: Matthew Ciardullo and Lindsay Mierau

Matthew Ciardullo  speaks about turning the less than traditional grad experience into a positive, and that feeling part of a bigger picture can drive some to pursue bigger goals. Lindsay Mierau touches on memories made, and how proud Norkam grads should feel as they move into the world.

South Kamloops: Cohen Freeze and Danielle Roche

Cohen Freeze and Danielle Roche express gratitude to school staff and teachers, their parents and fellow students, talk about three things they learned in high school (one of which involves who NOT to take fashion advice from) and point out all the ways South Kam Grads have been exceptional.


Clearwater: Emma Collins, Luke Lavigne, and Juniper Wadlegger

Juniper Wadlegger, Emma Collins and Luke Lavigne speak about their class, things they didn’t know, and their gratitude to staff, teachers and their parents.

Chase: Nickolai Hedrich and Inez Hegelstad

Inez Hegelstad and Nikolai Hedrich speak about their memories of high school, new skills learned, and the way struggles and hardships helped them discover new strengths. They are grateful bonds and memories will always remain, hoping that “…when we are 80 we can still look back on these friendships and laugh.”

Sa-Hali: Olamide Olabiyi and Thamindu Widyaratne

Thamindu Widyarante and Olamide Olabiyi speak about their school motto, ‘Together’ – and how it shapes school culture. They share stories about what it was like to attend and then graduate from Sa-Hali – telling funny stories about their experiences. They offer advice, gratitude and inspiration to their fellow grads.

Barriere: Desiree Anderson and Aaron VanSickle

Aaron Van Sickle and Desiree Anderson say graduating in a small class of 25 students where many have known each other since Kindergarten has been a great experience. They say the class of 2020 will not be forgotten if everyone finds a way to dig deeper when the going gets tough.

International Program: Ted Kim

Ted Kim speaks about the positive value of stress as a fuel for growth, and the need to embrace opportunities for growth as an important part of life.

International Program: Leila Naito

Leila Naito says her three years in Kamloops as an international student have been the best years of her life. She shares her experiences and offers insight into how she has grown, personally and as a student.

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