The weather was cooperative on a beautiful Thursday evening for the first outdoor graduation on the campus in Attleboro. The 263 members of the Class of 2012 received their diplomas at the school's McGrath Stadium.
School President Christopher Servant said the decision to move the ceremony outside was due to "increased enrollment coupled with our desire to accommodate more guests."
He joked, "The pessimists among us will ask, 'What if it rains?' While the optimists will respond, 'It will make the event all the more memorable.'"
In her Valedictorian address, Lindsey Claus—a Mansfield resident who will attend Harvard in the fall—spoke about the "incredible gift" of life.
"My fellow classmates, as we go forward, let's use an appreciation of who we are and where we stand in history as a guide for how we can enact the changes we desire to bring to this world," she said. "Our world is not perfect and life is not easy, but there is so much to live for and we have so much ahead of us."
Master of Ceremonies Bill Runey, school principal and father of 2012 graduate Mary Katherine, . He thanked the students, parents, faculty and staff for what he called "a tremendous six years" at the school.
"I will certainly cherish them," Runey said. "I loved them all."
Go to see a list of the Norton graduates and the colleges and universities they will attend.