Josephine Granneman will be representing her fellow graduates as this year’s Alberni District Secondary School valedictorian.
Granneman is one of many students who submitted an application to be chosen as valedictorian—signed off by 10 students and two teachers. After a short campaign and election, she learned that she had been selected by her peers in early May.
“It’s kind of weird,” Granneman admitted. “I’m happy and thrilled that I get to represent such a wide variety of students. But it’s also kind of a weight on my shoulders.”
Granneman said she wants to make sure she recognizes her fellow classmates in her speech.
“I want to give some recognition for all the students who have shown a leadership role in the school in the community,” she said.
The end of the school year is always incredibly busy for grads—especially so for Granneman, who works a couple of part-time jobs. She also spent the last two weeks of the school year working on and perfecting a valedictorian speech for her grad night on Friday, June 29.
Her speech, she admitted, will definitely feature “a couple of horrible jokes.” But Granneman also wants to provide some advice for her fellow grads.
“So many people are going to get wrapped up in making sure they’re successful,” said Granneman. “They forget that the main purpose of life is to be happy. I don’t want them to forget that.”
Although Granneman took a lot of academic classes throughout high school, she said some of her favourite memories came from the non-academic classes, like P.E. and art.
“There are so many different people in them,” she explained. “It’s nice to touch my roots down with a little bit of everybody.”
Another favourite memory, she added with a laugh, is the end of the school year when the school buses play “School’s Out.”
“That’s pretty great,” she said.
Granneman will be staying in Port Alberni for the next year, taking courses at North Island College so that the transition from high school to university is “smoother.”
“And then hopefully I can go on to a university that offers an education program,” she said.
Her ultimate goal, she said, is to teach French immersion to grades K-12.