The ‘comeback’ class

The 171 graduating seniors of New Ulm High School’s Class of 2024 toss their mortarboards in the air at the close of Friday’s commencement celebration.

NEW ULM – The New Ulm High School Class of 2024 graduated 171 students Friday.

Social Studies teacher Robert Bute served as this year’s guest speaker. He said this was the 139th class to graduate from NUHS since 1885.

Bute said the early students lived a much different life then the current class, but said in many ways they had the same concerns as students today.

Bute remember the last time he served as a class guest speaker. It was in 2020 when the class of 2024 was finishing eighth grade online due to COVID. Bute said for the 2020 graduation, he delivered his address in an empty room directly into a camera. He described it as a heartbreaking year for seniors who did not get to experience typical senior year activities or even get to say goodbye together as a class.

“Class of 2024, as you sit next to each other one last time, take a moment to cherish the memories you made here,” Bute said

Bryer Hoffmann delivers the New Ulm High School senior class commencement address. He praised his class for their talents and promised that while the future was uncertain, the future also offered endless possibilities.

The Class of 2024’s entire high school career existed in the shadow of COVID. Bute said their freshmen year was dominated hand sanitizers, masks, assigned seating and mask breaks. He said it was a challenging time to start high school. However, a through a combination strong leadership, huge personalities, competitiveness, a sense of humor and a willingness to get around, the class of 2024 was exactly what the doctor order.

“You led the greatest comeback in school history,” Bute said. He argued the Class of 2024 had led one of the most successful academic years.

Bute gave quick quiz to the graduating class. He listed off a series of academic achievements and activities asking the students to raise their hand if it applied to them. For every entry on this list, dozens of hands went up, showing the Class of 2024 was heavily active in their education.

Looking after graduation, Bute acknowledged the future looked scary, but said “That’s what makes it so excitement. Life is an adventure.”

He also warned that if the students ever find themselves on a path that provides no challenges, they are probably on a path that leads no where.

Student Council President Daviney Dreckman opens the commencement ceremony by congratulating the Class of 2024, thank teachers, staff and parents for their parents for their support.

Bute congratulated the Class of 2024 and thanked them for making NUHS a better place.

During the Senior Class Commencement Address Bryer Hoffman also praised his class for succeeding in difficult times.

“One thing I realized about our class is how influential we were at making change at this school,” Hoffman said. “If we wanted something to happen or change in our school, we were adamant and persistent about it.”

Hoffmann was confident his class could continue to achieve great things. He said he was eager to see what his classmates would do in the future.

“The future is filled with uncertainties and obstacles,” he said “But it is also bright with endless possibilities.”

The Class of 2024 take one final quiz. Guest speaker Robert Bute asked the students to raise their hands for each academic achievement or activity they took part in during their high school career.

NUHS Class of 2024 stands together one last time before graduation. Commencement speaker Robert Bute encouraged the class to cherish the memories they made here together.


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