2024 Valedictory Address: Sean Turner

May 21, 2024
By: Sean Turner, Class of 2024

“To prepare young men for the work of life.” That is a phrase that many of us have heard throughout our months, years, or if you are Ian Sanford… 6 years at this academy. That is the motto of our beloved Southern Prep Academy, and THAT is exactly what they did. Looking around the room today, I see many familiar faces; faces of graduates who put 12 years of constant effort to make it here, faces of parents who made one of the hardest decisions of their lives to enroll us in this academy, and faces of faculty who have pushed us in the direction we need to go. The reason I keep saying “us” is because we, the class of 2024, are a family; we, the class of 2024, pushed each other to the finish line, only to find out it was only the beginning; and we, the class of 2024, will change the world. Some of you glanced at us and saw miscreants, but to those of you who saw potential, thank you. You are one of the many reasons we are here today, people like Major Mayer who always greets us with a firm handshake, after a long break. People like Mrs. Murphy who is always actively trying to push us to be better. And especially people like Ms. Toni, who you could always count on for a quote of the day and some words of encouragement, or discouragement if you did something wrong. As we go through life, we are said to meet nearly 80,000 individuals. These will be Major Mayers, Mrs. Murphys, Ms. Tonis; but they will also be people who will challenge your beliefs and people who will try to tear you down. They all have one thing in common… You can learn something from each and every one of them. No matter your situation, no matter your age, no matter where you are 40 years from now; you can learn something from every person you meet. From me, I have just 3 things I want you to remember.

  1. First, I have a quote for you: “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right.” Let me repeat that, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you are right.” Life is full of failure, mistakes, and disappointments. None of these can permanently stop you. You have the power to overcome anything life will throw at you.
  2. Second, no tide pods are not edible
  3. Finally, I would like to leave off on a famous quote courtesy of Major Mayer, “If there is a no, I guarantee there is a yes out there as well. Go find it.”

As we leave today, we start a new beginning. A beginning full of opportunities. Will you take them? On behalf of the class of ‘24 I would like to give our appreciation to all those who pushed us to be the men we are today. And to the class of ‘24, all I have left to say is today is the day. Hooah!

Click here to watch Noah’s speech on our Youtube.


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