By Mayor Bob Simpson
It’s an understatement to say that this is a challenging year in which to graduate at any level in our education system. Not only has the academic year been interrupted by the pandemic and students been forced to switch gears from in-person instruction to some form of online education, the continuation of the public health restrictions on large public gatherings is making it impossible for graduating classes to celebrate in any way they would consider to be normal (and expected) after achieving their particular educational milestone.
On behalf of City Council, I offer our heartfelt congratulations to all Quesnel graduates and our sincere hope you will find a way to celebrate your accomplishment with family and friends in a manner that lets you truly enjoy this special moment, while still ensuring you continue to adhere to the public health restrictions we’re all living under.
The extraordinary nature of this year’s rapid shut down of our economy and the quick imposition of social isolation restrictions is a stark reminder that we should take nothing for granted. Any expectations we have about our future should be moderated by this reality: things always change; nothing is ever certain.
It’s how we choose to deal with the reality of change, whether the change happens slowly or rapidly, that defines and shapes us.
Do we choose to dig in and fight for the “right” for things to remain the same? In other words, do we adopt an entitlement mentality. Or, do we choose to embrace whatever is thrown at us and simply pivot and adapt to our new reality?
Better yet, do we choose to pivot and adapt with a sense of fun and excitement about charting a new path and exploring different options; embracing the moment and being a leader in actually shaping whatever the “new normal” may be? This is the only way to find true joy in a constantly changing world, regardless of the nature of the change.
During times of global stress, such as we are experiencing now, society desperately needs more leaders who will embrace the challenge of our times and will exercise courage and creativity in the face of adversity.
As you celebrate your academic milestone in this challenging year, I hope you will choose to embrace the rapid changes confronting us and choose to help us use this time as an ideal opportunity to shape a more inclusive and sustainable society.
Stay safe and enjoy your accomplishment!
Mayor Bob Simpson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.