CHARLESTON, WV (WCHS/WVAH) — The 2017 graduates of South Charleston High School filed into the Charleston Civic Center Arena to say goodbye to a chapter of their lives joined by a very special guest.
Judge Judith Sheindlin sent them off with an experience few have.
Her message to students was based in reality and rooted in her own experience.
You only have one chance to make a first impression, listen to everyone, but only take advice from those you respect, and find what you love, make money doing it, and do it better than anyone else were among the main themes.
“Few will discover the cure for cancer, or win an Oscar,” she said, “so life’s brass ring comes from being the best human you can be.”
Other speakers painted a more inspirational picture or picked fun at the situation with one student quoting Judge Judy’s more memorable moments from the podium.
“If I don’t get the truth,” the student said quoting Sheindlin, “You’ll be eating your shoes.”
Judy was brought to this commencement by a special graduate.
Sophia Mallory beat out hundreds of high school students across the country in an essay competition.
“I’m so excited,” Mallory said sitting next to Sheindlin.
Mallory said Judge Judy’s hard-line actions have been an inspiration to her.
She said it is the responsibility of every graduate to live on for the three students who died this year before graduation.
“I hope we all live successful lives for us and for them,” Mallory said.
Mallory says Judge Judy coming to Charleston means more than just advice for this class.
She hoped it brought a little positive attention to West Virginia.
“I hope this brings what we’ve been needing for so long,” she said, “some positive light, because there is nothing but positivity here.”