Veritas graduates set to make a ‘mark’ on the world

Veritas graduating senior Drake Napier follows his fellow graduates to the reception party during the 2015 Veritas Christian School Commencement Ceremony Sunday afternoon at First Christian Church, 1000 Kentucky St.

Pharmaceutical scientist Michael Windheuser had some humble advice for Veritas Christian School’s class of 2015 Sunday.

He encouraged the graduating seniors to read in their free time, learn a new language, travel as much as possible and always make their bed in the morning.

The message: Be a lifelong learner and someone who sets and achieves their goals.

2015 Veritas Christian School graduates

Kesandra Fischer

Lacey Billings

Andrea Gatts

Drake Napier

Tarynn Stacy

Elizabeth Warner

“Anyone, including you, can do great things,” said Windheuser, who works for the American Institute for Technology and Science Education, during his commencement address. “It doesn’t take someone exceptional, just someone who steadily works toward their goals.

“The world is your classroom and many choices are available to you.”

More than 120 people came to First Christian Church on Sunday to witness that six students graduate. Veritas Christian School, which instructs about 160 students from kindergarten through 12th grade, is a nondenominational parochial school that started in 1978.

Two valedictorians spoke at the ceremony, Kesandra Fischer and Lacey Billings. Fischer, who plans to attend Kansas State University to study interior design, thanked her teachers for being “rock stars.”

“We graduates are indebted to all teachers for bestowing their knowledge and wisdom onto us. Now as we go out into the world to a future that holds quite a few unknowns, I want to encourage everyone that the mark we make on the world is also God’s mark.”

Billings, who will attend Kansas University to study radiology, encouraged her classmates to be mindful of their character as they begin a new chapter in their lives. She quoted Martin Luther King, Jr. by reminding them that “Intelligence is not enough. Intelligence plus character, that is the goal of true education.”

Also graduating Sunday was Andrea Gatts, who is undecided about her field of study; Drake Napier, who will attend Wichita State University; Tarynn Stacy, who will attend Johnson County Community College; and Elizabeth Warner, who will also attend JCCC and hopes to teach English in Japan.