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Tim Rosenberger

 
Attending Georgetown University; Co-Valedictorian Class of 2012
Following is from Tim's Co-Valedictorian address in June 2012:

When we walk across this stage and get our diplomas tonight, it will symbolize the end of so much more then high school.  As well as saying goodbye to Lutheran West many of us will be saying goodbye to our community, our churches, our friends, and our families in the coming months. And while tonight may be about looking at the wonderful opportunities that lie in the future, I would like to take this opportunity to offer several thank you’s on behalf of myself and my classmates.

First, I would be remiss if I did not thank my former Lakewood Lutheran principal, Mr. Dittmar.  As well as being an excellent coach, teacher, and role model, Mr. Dittmar took special interest in helping his students continue to grow in their faith.  Mr. Dittmar taught us the importance of a personal walk with God.  Mr. Dittmar taught my confirmation class and, during that class, I choose Proverbs 3:6 as my bible verse which reads “in all thy ways acknowledge him and he shall direct thy paths.” I honestly feel God’s presence directing my life as I walk with him, and I know that Mr. Dittmar played an integral role in helping me walk with my Lord.

The last four years at Lutheran West, I have gained so much from so many wonderful teachers. Teachers like Mrs. Gross who helped me learn to speak in public, Mr. Muth and Mr. Chamberlin who helped me excel at music and Mrs. Nemeth, who even after I finished her class fostered my interest in science. The caring of Lutheran West teachers is epitomized by Ms. Shimek who spent countless hours with me before school the last two years dragging me through upper level math. The success of Lutheran West’s E.P.I.C. Service Club is a testament to our advisors, Mr. Ragland and Mr. Fuchs. I also need to thank Mr. Fenske who taught me how to argue and helped plant me more firmly in my beliefs. My reputation as a leader would not have happened without the help of Mrs. Pangrace, who, as well as giving me a love of history, encouraged me to run for student council. Although I knew virtually no one, I was elected Freshman Class President. Mrs. Pangrace reignited my love of politics, and my choice of colleges proves what a huge impact she had.  Frau, danke shön. Ich habe viele Deutsch gelernt, aber wichtiger, habe ich auch das Erlebnis gehabt, einen Schauspieler zu warden. Vor dir zeige ich nur Respekt.

Finally, there is one special teacher that I need to thank. My first day of Lutheran West I showed up for Biology late and was told I was a “typical Freshman.” By the time that class had ended, all the papers I had signed “Tim” were slapped back on my desk and I was ordered to “use my big boy name”.  Before that first semester was over, Mrs. Miller had given me and F on a test, and what remains the only detention I have ever received at Lutheran West.

Fortunately, Mrs. Miller was a phenomenal teacher who did not write me off. She challenged me to do better.  During a second semester shadowing project, I discovered my interest in medicine while shadowing a local surgeon. I told Mrs. Miller who then, characteristically, went above and beyond for a student. With her help, I secured an internship in the Cleveland Clinic’s top ranked cardiology department which I have now held for 3 years. I am so grateful to her, and everyone at the Clinic for all they have taught me.

I also need to thank my guidance counselor Mrs. Slack.  As well as being an excellent Academic Challenge coach, Mrs. Slack was a perfect counselor. My first week at Lutheran West Mrs. Slack called me down to her office. She wanted to meet with each of her students. Her first question was “what do you think a guidance counselor does?” to which I answered “helps people if they get involved with drugs?” It turns our a guidance counselor is the person who makes it possible for you to get great internships, win scholarships, and apply to twenty some schools. I can not thank you enough for everything you did for me.

Finally, I need to thank my parents.  My father refers to all the money he pays for my siblings and my school “his Lexus payments.’ Turns out dad, that after you pay for three through college, it’ll be more like two Ferraris…..probably ought to have Ms. Shimek check that. I’m not up here for my math skills.

Also my mother, who gave up a career to stay home with me.  My mom would wait for me to get home from work and play practices till 11:30 at night to talk to and help me, just to get up to help me leave for school at 6am the next morning for bio early birds. I know that so much of my success is directly attributable to you.

It is customary for the Valedictorian to offer some forward looking and uplifting advice to his classmates, and all I can say to the singularly impressive class of 2012 is don’t settle.  Don’t become complacent. We have accomplished so much thus far and we can do so much more in the future.  When I look out into this crowd of faces I know that the world I will die in will be so much greater that the one I was born into.  I look forward to living in buildings designed by Bethany Roman, decorated by Abby Cole, and constructed by Emily Alexander’s bare hands. I know I’ll be well cared for in a world with doctors like Josh Krach and nurses like Rachel Civittolo. I look forward to crossing party lines to vote for Tabatha Pawlak, and to dieing in the nuclear apocalypse caused by Anna Kukelhan’s endeavors in international diplomacy.  And that doesn’t even begin to do justice to the members of the class of 2012 who are amazing at everything………and by members I mean Taylor Mack.

Hebrews 12 describes a great “cloud of witnesses”, and I truly feel like a part of such a group as a member of the class of 2012.  This class has the opportunity to better our world and help create a stronger, kinder, Christianity.  I challenge each and every one of you to sort through what you’ve learned here at West and apply what you keep to your daily lives.  You should never hold a belief you think is stupid, don’t let anyone tell you what to believe or what to do, just seek out the path God has for you and put it into action. Live out Christ’s message of love above all else, acknowledge him in all you do, and I know that he will bless you so deeply. Although we cherish our memories of Lutheran West, don’t let this be the high point. Take full advantage of the bottomless abilities God as given you, harness ambition on his behalf, and I look forward to how you will truly change the world that we share.

Thank you all for joining us here this evening. May God bless you all, and may God bless Lutheran West.


Josh Wolfgram

Engineering Major at Valparaiso University; Co-Valedictorian - Class of 2012.

“Perhaps it is good to have a beautiful mind, but an even greater gift is to discover a beautiful heart.”

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Lutheran West
3850 Linden Road
Rocky River, Ohio 44116-4099

Phone: 440.333.1660
Fax: 440.333.1729
Email: info@lutheranwest.com

Acts 3:6-8 I don’t have much, but what I have I give to you:  In the name of Jesus-Walk!  The man jumped up leaping, dancing and praising God!