The final assignment: Steamboat Springs High School celebrates Class of 2024 at graduation ceremony

The Steamboat Springs High School Class of 2024 turns its tassels and throws caps to the sky at the conclusion of the school's graduation ceremony on Saturday, May 25, 2024, at Gardner Field.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today

Though senioritis had kicked in for most, two seniors at Steamboat Springs High School were tasked with one last assignment before closing the door and saying goodbye to the school they called home for the last four years. 

The assignment? A graduation speech. 

The majority of the Class of 2024 had been together for 13 years, and on Saturday morning, that period officially came to a close with the school’s commencement ceremony at Gardner Field. 

Henry Dismuke and Alicia Sabin stood proudly behind the podium on the graduation stage to deliver speeches that they hoped would pay homage to their special class, while offering advice and well wishes for the futures of their classmates. 

Dismuke saw it as an opportunity to get out of his comfort zone and challenge himself by speaking in front of a large crowd. Sabin, on the other hand, took the chance to speak one last time in a high school setting — something she admittedly did a lot over the past four years. 

“I was trying to be inspirational and give something that is tangible for the Class of 2024,” Dismuke said following his speech. “Through the process, I only had two people help me … and I didn’t want anybody to look at my speech until today because I thought it would be something great.” 

Both speeches began similarly, taking time to recognize the school’s faculty, their families and classmates. Then, the speeches were crafted more specifically for their fellow students and their school experience. 

Dismuke referenced the four principles of S.A.I.L. while Sabin took the time to look back on some unforgettable moments that happened within the class over the years. 

Henry Dismuke offered a speech to his classmates during the 2024 Steamboat Springs High School commencement on Saturday, May 25, 2024.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today

The theme for Dismuke’s speech was “The Grind.” He explained that hardships in life are inevitable, but the most important factor toward success in life is staying on the grind.

This knowledge is something Dismuke hopes to carry with him when he attends the United States Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, New York, this fall, while he studies marine engineering. 

He concluded his speech with this message to his classmates: 

“No matter where we go or what we choose to do with our lives, we must carry on Steamboat culture. A culture that includes spirit, accountability, inclusivity and leadership … When faced with the grind, you must embrace it.” 

Immediately following Dismuke was Sabin, whose goal was to keep the graduating students captivated with comedic quips while nailing down a thought-provoking message throughout. 

Sabin explained that the majority of the class had created life-long friendships that formed in elementary school. Taking this step forward can be intimidating without the comfort of your friends by your side. 

“I talked about change at the end of my speech,” Sabin said. “I hope (the Class of 2024) is willing to take change head on and be the change that the world needs.”

Alicia Sabin delivers a heartfelt speech at the 2024 Steamboat Springs High School commencement on Saturday, May 25, 2024.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today

For Sabin, the idea of change caused a variety of emotions, from excitement to uncertainty. She will soon begin her next level of education at San Diego State University and study psychology. 

Sabin views this change as a positive thing. It is her opportunity to see the world outside the scope of a tight-knit community like Steamboat Springs and meet new people and take on new challenges. 

She also saw change in a different way. These new beginnings grant each graduate the chance to manifest change in the world and make a difference. 

These speeches may have been Dismuke’s and Sabin’s final assignments in high school, but they each acknowledged that the real work for their futures begins now. 

“The world we are stepping into is filled with many injustices and crises,” Sabin said. “It is a world that desperately needs individuals who are not just willing to adapt to change, but who are determined to drive it. I know this group has the empathy, knowledge and resilience to make the difference that is needed in this world.”

The Steamboat Springs High School choir sings a song about saying goodbye to their classmates in the 2024 graduating class on Saturday, May 25, 2024.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today
Steamboat Springs High School Principal Jay Hamric leads his students in a clap and cheer.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today
Michael Hagney shares his gratitude for Steamboat Springs High School teachers and staff.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today
Madeline Moss smiles down on her classmates.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today
Rabbi Kolby Morris-Dahary offers graduating students opening remarks.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today
Ashley Anfang takes the mic at the Steamboat Springs High School 2024 Commencement ceremony.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today
Brady Adams watches as his fellow classmates march down Gardner Field.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today

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