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Sarah Mae Concepcion
CIC Outstanding Student
7th Graduation Ceremony
May 10, 2015 at the N Hotel.

I am honored and most grateful for this opportunity to give this Graduation Speech in behalf of my fellow graduates! My sincere gratitude and appreciation to the school administration and to the faculty and staff of Culinary Institute of Cagayan de Oro for this chance. Again thank you very much!

Today marks a very important milestone in our lives. For all of us graduates, today signifies an end or a conclusion, as well as an exciting beginning.

One, today marks the end our being student chefs.

Two, we officially leave the kitchens and instruction halls of CIC.

Three, today we start looking forward to what is to come in the future.

As graduates of Culinary Institute of Cagayan de Oro we have what is described as “life skills” that can help us reach our greatest potentials. We have something that we can use to make our lives and the lives of those we love, better.

I’m sure we all know how to cook great food, and I’m also confident that by now we’re not just “ordinary cooks” – we have the skills to make food a delight for the people we will be cooking for.

So the next question to ask really, as we come to this point in our lives, is this: what’s next for us?

I’m pretty sure we all have plans for our future, and we all want to succeed. Well, some of us we may end up as popular Chefs in the not-so-distant future! Some of us may be employed overseas. Some may end up running their own restaurants; and some, full time mothers and wives. Wherever our paths may lead us, I am inspired to share with you this African-American Proverb which says:

“God makes three requests of his children: Do the best you can, where you are, with what you have, now”

We define success differently. My idea of success, I’m sure, is different from your own idea of what success means. The differences are as numerous as the stars in the sky. But one thing is certain, and highly likely similar with us all – we want to make something of ourselves. So the next question to ask is …

How?

How can I make something of myself?

The answer is simple: we all have to have a plan … of what we want to be, where we want to be, and how to get there.

Again my plan will be a lot different from yours, and this is as normal as the sun will rise tomorrow in the east. And moreover, we have to respect each other’s plans. We just have to remember that to have a plan is THE MOST IMPORTANT thing of all! It is your step 1 which will bring you closer to where you want to be.

As graduates, let me end my talk with this quotation from John D. Rockefeller, Jr. He said:

I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity, an obligation; every possession, a duty. 

What does this mean? This means that we arrived to where we are right now not only because of our efforts. We are here, successful, because of the contribution and sacrifices of our families, our friends, and our teachers and mentors, and because of this, we owe them! We owe them a lot! There is no way we can ever repay them back. But there’s so much we can do. We can continue to nurture and develop our skills and talents. We need to be serious about our future lives and this means we need to be responsible and accountable.

May our Heavenly Father bless us as we begin our new journey, and may we always cook healthy and delicious food in the years and years to come!
Congratulations again to all the graduates and to our dear parents, family, friends, and all our teachers and mentors, thank you very much!
May God bless us all!