Sunday, September 19, 2010

School Pride

This is Mr. Weber's address to JPII students on Monday, September 20, 2011

It may sound counter-intuitive, but watching the football game on Friday night made me realize what tremendous pride I have in Pope John Paul II High School.

I am proud of our football team and our players. They competed, especially in the second half when it was no longer a question of winning or losing—it was a question of pride. If you talk to our team, they don’t make excuses, they just go back to work—and on Saturday morning, less than 12 hours later, they were back lifting and practicing, just as they did all summer.

Vince Lombardi, legendary coach of the Green Bay Packers, once said: “It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.” This team stands back up again and again—a tribute to them and their coaches. Watch this team, be patient. They have a winning attitude, and over time this winning attitude will begin to produce victories.

While I’m at it, I was proud of our student body on Friday night. The crowd was amazing—we literally ran out of parking on campus, and you were there until the end supporting your team. I was proud of our fantastic cheerleaders—they put on a good fund-raiser, and their cheering and stunting is always amazing. I was proud of our jazz band’s first time ever fully amplified performance with our new stage and sound equipment, so much so that I went to Mr. Suska and said “Turn them up”, which he did. Having a real band performing at our games is going to be a lot of fun as we move forward.

I am proud of this school. I am proud of you students, who do some pretty amazing things. Last week the College Board announced “A.P. Scholar” awards based on last May’s testing, and JPII students received an amazing 73 awards, including 3 “National A.P. Scholar” awards, the highest honor possible. I am equally proud of those of you who are NOT A.P. students: It’s easy to be motivated when working hard automatically yields A’s or A.P. awards. It takes guts to keep working hard when those things don’t happen. Your hard work is inspirational—you inspire your teachers, and we’re proud of you.

Work hard this week. Treat each other kindly. Make yourself a better person. My God bless all of you.

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