Seymour High School senior Morgan Reichenbacker is ready for all of the pomp that comes with graduation.
The 18-year-old will receive her diploma along with her 306 classmates during commencement at 2:30 p.m. Sunday in the Lloyd E. Scott Gymnasium.
A baccalaureate service will be at 12:45 p.m. at Central Christian Church.
This year’s valedictorian is Chloe Wahl, and the salutatorian is Daniel Hauersperger.
Although to some it’s just a piece of paper, Reichenbacker said her high school diploma represents a lot of hard work and sacrifice and is the key to her future.
That future may not be typical of most girls her age, as she has enlisted in the U.S. Navy and leaves for boot camp next month.
During her high school career, Reichenbacker was involved in the school’s Jobs for America’s Graduates program, or JAG. She credits that program with helping her set and achieve her goals and ultimately leading her down the path she has chosen.
She also played soccer this year to keep in shape, is the manager of the Seymour Owls baseball team this spring and spent a lot of time after school waiting tables at Tokyo Hibachi and Sushi restaurant.
Reichenbacker is the daughter of Mike and Crissy Reichenbacker. She has three younger siblings, Emma, Logan and Ethan.
“I have amazing parents who support me in everything I do, including joining the military,” Morgan Reichenbacker said. “I had mentioned that I was talking to a recruiter a few times, but I’m sure it wasn’t easy for them when I came home one day and sat them down and said, ‘Hey, this is really happening. I need to know your honest opinion.’ My mom broke down crying but not in a bad way.”
Reichenbacker recently took the time to answer some questions about graduation, her time spent at Seymour High School and her plans.
How does it feel to be graduating?
Completely unreal. I remember attending graduation last year for some of my friends. We just had graduation practice, and it’s really starting to sink in. It’s weird to see it from the inside out rather than on the outside looking in.
She attended SHS all four years.
And I wouldn’t have it any other way. I have the best classmates and am so happy that I was surrounded by such great people throughout not only high school but also middle school and even elementary school.
What will you miss most?
Seeing all of my friends. I know that after high school you lose contact with over half of the class. I’m not really looking forward to that.
Do you have any memories that stick out in your mind from your years at SHS?
The senior campout when we all brought tents and set them up, ours not so much, and played games and just had a great time. A new one that will be with me forever happened at honor day when a handful of other classmates and I got recognized for going into our branch of service and we got a standing ovation by all of our peers.
How has your time at SHS helped prepare you for life?
I matured a lot throughout my years at SHS. I made new friends and built a lot of relationships. I also learned to be strong no matter what, and that just because something doesn’t go the way it’s supposed to doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world.
What were your favorite subjects/classes?
Art has always been my favorite class. I’ve always had a strong passion for it, and it’s become a very time-consuming hobby. My other favorite would be Mr. (Jeff) Richey’s study hall because he was always very laid back, and there was never a dull moment.
Was there any teacher that had a major influence on you?
Mrs. (Celeste) Bowman has always been like a mom to her students. She has helped some of us with jobs, college applications and scholarships and is always there for moral support.
What are your plans? What made you choose this path?
I leave June 29 for Navy boot camp in Great Lakes, Illinois, for eight weeks. Then I will head off to San Antonio, Texas, for seven weeks of military police training. I chose this path because I didn’t think college was the best choice for me right now. I will eventually go back later on, but when the Navy recruiter came into our classroom multiple times as a guest speaker, a spark just kept going off in my head. I always had an interest in it. I’ve always said I wanted to make a difference and I wanted to be somebody, and now, I get to do just that. Swearing into and getting to be a part of that less than 1 percent just fills me with so much joy and pride. It is definitely one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.
What advice do you have for students at SHS?
Don’t blink. Senior year flies by. Enjoy every minute of it, even if the senioritis creeps up on you.
What: Seymour High School graduation
When: 2:30 p.m. Sunday
Where: Seymour High School’s Lloyd E. Scott Gymnasium