Dan Roche, a sports journalist and broadcaster and father of graduating senior Victoria Roche, spoke Monday June 6 at the Class of 2016 Graduation Ceremony at the Tsongas Center. He made connections with members of the audience and was overall well received by the crowd.
This year’s graduation ceremony followed the traditions of Andover High School Graduations of years past. It began at around 5:00 pm with student introductions, recognition of the Valedictorian and Salutatorian, and the class essayist (this year Tim Chen). The Superintendent and Town Manager also gave congratulations. After this Dan Roche was introduced as class speaker and gave his speech. Finally Principal Conrad presented the class for graduation and student’s names were called to receive diplomas.
Dan Roche began his speech by telling his story. He grew up in Methuen and graduated North Andover High School. He went to a small college in Maine which closed leading him to Syracuse where he majored in Journalism with the goal of becoming a sports journalist. He accomplished just that and for many years has traveled the country and the world for stories. He mentioned many times that he’s a simple guy money isn’t everything and that it makes such a difference to do something that you love. He then said that the most important thing the graduates should do is follow their passion. He encouraged them to use college as a time to find what they wanted to do and find the things they need to accomplish it. His final message was that there are always going to be people who don’t think you can succeed but you still have to follow what you want.
By Nick Gilpin