St. Patrick Catholic School

122 West Street, Portland, MI   (517) 647-7551

Reflections by Randy Hodge

Saying Goodbye to the Class of 2018

Posted on May 22, 2018 at 12:45 AM

When I began my tenure as administrator of St. Patrick Catholic School, the students from the Class of 2018 were in third grade. After ten years with them we said goodbye on Sunday, May 20. On that day, they entered a new phase of their lives.


Our goal at St. Patrick is to ensure that when our seniors receive their diplomas on graduation day, they have a rock-solid foundation for a successful life--a life that our Lord has prepared for each one of them. Our goal is that they will continue to serve as living representatives of our school mission statement: We Pray! We Learn! We Achieve!


It is my belief that the Class of 2018 lives and represents our mission statement in a positive way. They were strong leaders throughout the school year beginning with our annual spirit week celebration, continuing through planning a unique senior trip adventure to Chicago and right up to their last day of school. I am proud to say they leave our school with a rock-solid foundation to continue living our mission statement. They provided sound leadership, served as role models for our younger students, provided many outstanding suggestions for ways to improve our school and were well prepared to be leaders throughout their senior year.


Graduation began with Mass celebrated by our new pastor, Reverend Mike Alber with Deacon Michael Steffes Jr., a graduate of Portland St. Patrick, providing inspiring words for the Class of 2018 during his homily. Michael will become a priest on June 2. After Mass, the graduates and their families moved to the school gymnasium for commencement. Mr. Hodge began by sharing the major achievements of the Class of 2018 which included:


• 14 of the 26 students are members of the National Honor Society.

• 13 were recognized as CMAC Scholar Athletes meaning they had at least a 3.4 GPA and lettered in at least two sports, one of which was in their senior year.

• 24 out of the 26 plan to go on to higher education with two working on apprenticeships.

• One has signed a National Letter of Intent to participate in college softball Franciscan University of Steubenville.

• 10 are graduating with honors (3.79 GPA or higher) with seven of those having a weighted 4.0 GPA or higher. 24 have a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

• They were offered a total of $270,000 in scholarship money. They have accepted approximately $100,000 of that money from the schools they plan on attending in the fall.


Fr. Mike opened the ceremony with prayer and shared some inspiring words with the graduates. Valedictorian Kylee Schrauben and Salutatorian Tyler Schrauben addressed their classmates, sharing accomplishments, memories, good times together and all the possibilities for a great future. Following the speeches, the graduates were called forward to receive their diploma from Mr. Hodge. One by one, they turned their tassel and the Class of 2018 joined a group of more than 2,200 living Shamrock alumni around the world.


Fr. Mike closed the ceremony with prayer and they processed out of the gym and into the future. There were hugs to give and pictures to take. Finally, caps were tossed as an official ending to a great school career by a great group of students.


They are leaving us with a rock-solid foundation of values, knowledge, wisdom, and faith. I can say with the utmost certainty that they prayed, they learned, and yes, without a doubt, they achieved. May God bless every one of them and their future endeavors as they move to the next phase of their lives.



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