Top BMR students Morrisson, Franciosa lead 2013 class

Top BMR students Morrisson, Franciosa lead 2013 class

Jennifer Morrison, at left, is the valedictorian of the Blackstone Millville Regional High School class of 2013 and Anna Franciosa the salutatorian.

BLACKSTONE - The Class of 2013 at Blackstone-Millville Regional High School met for one last time as seniors at the school's graduation on Friday June 7, with valedictorian Jennifer Morrisson and salutatorian Anna Franciosa looking back on four years of good times and growth with their peers, while providing a few words of inspiration as the graduates move into the next stage of life.

"Crossing the stairs tonight may feel a lot like crossing the finish line, but in reality this is also a major starting point," said Morrisson. "It is one of the few moments in our lives - perhaps the only one quite like it - when we can enjoy such a beautiful view in all directions."

BMR Principal Michael Dudek announced Morrisson and Franciosa as the school's top graduates earlier this month.

In addition to playing clarinet throughout her high school years, Morrisson was editor of the yearbook and president of the Cancer Club.

"I think most of you would agree when I say that the four years we've spent in high school have helped define who we are today," said Morrisson. "When we came into the 9th grade we had a lot left to learn, and not all of it was academic. Somewhere between memorizing the quadratic formula and reciting Newton's third law, we began to make discoveries of our own."

"We chose our own classes and decided what we valued most. High school was a place where we could grow," she said.

Franciosa joined the class in looking back on the years that have defined them.

"Throughout high school we learned who we were. Many discovered that they are hard workers, creative, and kind," Franciosa said. "Some of us, including myself, learned we would never be professional athletes."

The salutatorian was an active member of the BMR High School Band throughout her high school years, playing the flute and participating in marching band and woodwind choir. Franciosa was also the National Honor Society treasurer and tutor coordinator.

But it was not all nostalgia as the girls discussed the graduates' bright, if uncertain futures.

"Reality sets limitations on us that we have to work with or overcome to achieve our dreams and goals," said Franciosa. "Embrace this uncertainty and use it to your advantage. Take risks and discover new passions."

Morrisson said that the education the class has received at BMR has given them the power to face the future with confidence and make a difference in the world.

"We could be the ones behind the changes we see," she said. "We can put in the hard work. We have the talent. We have the drive. We have the passion. And now, we also have the future."