WAXAHACHIE — Thursday evening, 96 Global High graduates entered the Sheaffer Full Life Center on the campus of Southwestern Assemblies of God University for the commencement ceremony honoring the Class of 2017.

“Global High School had another very successful year," Global High School principal Ken Lynch said. Lynch continued by recognizing the school’s achievement for the year.

"We were awarded straight A’s in state accountability — the only school in Ellis County to receive this," he said. "For the fourth year in a row, we were named a top performing school by US News and World Report, In addition, we were named an honor roll school by the Educational Results Partnership. These honors were made possible through the support of our community, our dedicated staff and our amazing students.”

Lynch then applauded the work of roughly 90 percent of the graduating class, as those students were walking the stage for the second time this month.

“On May 13, 86 of our 96 graduating seniors walked across the stage at the Navarro College graduation ceremony. Twenty of them graduated magna cum laude or sigma cum laude,” Lynch said.

He added, “There is an age old saying, that success breeds success. I cannot predict the future. But another age-old saying is the best prediction of the future is the performance of the past. Therefore, I have no doubt that all of our graduating seniors will be great achievers.

"There are a lot of ways to measure success. Unlike any one universal method, whether you are a CEO of a major company or a greeter at Walmart, ask yourself two questions," Lynch continued. "First, do people like working with me? Do I pull my own weight? Do I go above and beyond my duties? Second, do I add value? Am I an added value to someone around me? If you can answer yes to both these questions, you are truly successful. Congratulations to the Class of 2017. “

Global High School salutatorian, Levi Villarreal, defined the achievements of his class through a series of statistics.

“What are the defining characteristics of Global as a STEM school? The electives are based on science, technology, engineering and math. Tonight, I want to focus exclusively on the math portion," Villarreal explained. "By analyzing the Class of 2017, we collectively spent 529,820 hours at school. Some of the other facts that I noted are that a Global High senior has taken 324 tests, spent 2,520 hours completing homework, finished 51 major projects, trudged up 2,880 flights of stairs, suffered through 36 fire drills, and enrolled in 38 classes."

In concluding his speech, Villarreal told the class, “As each of us head off to college or the work force or where ever we are headed, it is important to remember that statistics, age, GPA, these numbers do not mean what we are or who we are. After all, the best part of my life is who I am.”

Global High School valedictorian, Devin Merrell, then described his journey of education and the values he gained through life and educational experiences.

“To the Class of 2017, Global has given us the opportunity to succeed in life. The decision is yours. Whether to succeed or not is your choice. Carry the spirit of Global where ever you go through life. I wish you the best of luck,” Merrell said.

During the ceremony, seniors Hannah Thedford, Telana Marlin, Adrian Reed and Xavier Goforth performed a musical offering. The ensemble performed the song, "Try Everything" by Shakira.

The ceremony concluded with the graduates marching out of the auditorium to waiting friends and relatives.