YouthBuild Brockton held its annual Completion Ceremony on Friday, September 19, 2014 at the Old Colony YMCA Youth Division on Main Street in Brockton. The ceremony was attended by a host of family members, friends, staff and several former YouthBuild Brockton students.
Director Joseph Barakat began the ceremony by reminding the students that this was a stepping stone to future success, not a destination. He challenged the students to take what they had learned in the program and continue to strive for greatness. Joe introduced Executive Director Mark Showan, who reminded the students of who they were when they arrived the first day of the program, and who they have become after working hard and struggling with the daily rigors of a construction schedule, as well as coping with an equally arduous academic schedule. He applauded them for their effort; and encouraged them to continue to work hard and to pursue their education and career dreams.
The program was honored by the attendance of the Mayor of Brockton Bill Carpenter. After meeting and congratulating each student individually prior to the ceremony, he addressed the students; congratulating them and thanking them for choosing to make a positive impact in their own lives. He commented on how their efforts could and would exponentially influence the lives of their families, friends and the greater Brockton community.
Lashon Amado, a 2010 YouthBuild Brockton graduate; now a staff member at YouthBuild USA, told of how the students reminded him of himself a few years earlier. With great enthusiasm he explained he knew what it felt to be them, but the best was yet to come. He told them , "As you leave here today, you experience achievement and you have marked a milestone in your life." He encouraged them to remember that feeling, to apply the life lessons they have learned at YouthBuild on a daily basis so they never forget what being capable feels like.
Post-Secondary Coordinator Trenetta Newman led the group as they recited the daily pledge for the final time as a group. It was an inspirations and spine tingling way to conclude the ceremony.
Excerpts from the ceremony can be seen on the Mayor of Brockton’s YouTube show, “Shoe City Scoop” at the link below