Developing Virtue High School's Commencement 1993
(Announcement) Developing Virtue High School's Commencement at the Sagely City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, took place at the Tao Ywan Hall on June 16, 1993. The Acting Principle, Dharma Master Heng Jywe, in his keynote address encouraged the Boys'-school graduates to use the principles they have learned for dealing with people and with the world wherever they go in the Society. Susan Rounds, the Chairman of the School Board Committee, encouraged students to combine their academic studies with their education in values in their search for ultimate truth. Dharma Master Heng Shen, a graduate of the girl's school also gave a speech. The girl students performed a play and songs to express their sincere best wishes. Seeing the progress the students have made, the students' parents and guests expressed their appreciation to the Girls' School Principle, Terri Nicholson. Following is the speech of Dharma Master Heng Shen, the graduate student of the Girls' school:
All Dharma Masters, the Principle, Teachers, Parents and all my friends,
Today is my last day in high school, and there is much that I want to say regarding my feelings about my school experience. One thing I'd like to emphasize here is that I'm really pleased and proud of my parents' decision two years ago to send me here to continue my studies. These two years of high school education in the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas have been a precious experience and will serve as a lasting memory for me. This school is relatively small compared to my previous high school which has nearly 3,000 students. Developing Virtue School, however, has some distinctive and significant features that make it stand out as an excellent place for both academic training and character development. Here in the school we put equal weight on academic studies as well as spiritual growth. We learn modern science and technology in order to prepare ourselves to face future tasks and challenges. Simultaneously, we bring along the collective philosophical knowledge and teachings of Confucianism with our studies so that we will be able to create and develop a new perception of the contemporary world, and further make changes to improve our lives. Here we have students from all over the world with varied cultural backgrounds. They are many different nationalities, different languages, and different religions. Yet despite all these differences, we're able to get together harmoniously as a big family. In the school, we're taught to be respectful and considerate toward our teachers and friends. The concept and practice of morality is central to our everyday life. Here we live as a group, yet at the same time each of us sticks to our own principles and sustains herself as a unique individual.
Living in a Buddhist monastery and studying in a Buddhist school for these two years, I learned more than I could have learned in other places. It has not only solidified my faith in Buddhism, but has also given me a real opportunity to see the whole community, living and practicing their lives according to the Six Guiding Principles of not fighting, not being greedy, not seeking, not being selfish, not pursuing personal advantages, and not lying. I really appreciate all these chances that have been given to me by the Venerable Master, my parents, and all the teachers and friends who have helped and encouraged me throughout my years of studies.
Here, with a whole-hearted appreciation, I wish all the teachers will enjoy their sacred job as life-guides for the students. As for my friends, I wish them to be well and happy in their studies, and be successful and prosperous in the future.