Carrington is giving the Valedictorian speech at her high school graduation today. She received over $2 million in scholarship offers. Not bad for a girl from a “failing school.”
“I have always studied. I am the oldest of four and I want them to be greater than me. I pray a lot and read my Bible. I am very in tune with God. I know I am meant to do something.
I went to a mostly white elementary and middle school. Vigor High School was a culture shock. I was also the only girl wearing a skirt. My mom and godmom went up there and talked to the principal about the uniform policy before my freshman year and got permission for me to wear skirts. People knew me after that. I heard that I was Muslim, very religions, stuck up, apostolic, a terrorist and too high class for pants. I also had my hair all natural when everyone else had weaves, perms and braids. I was never one to fit in. I just wanted to be successful and that is what I focused on.
Pre-cal was the hardest class for me. I wanted to take my own shortcuts and do the problems the way I wanted to do it. That is going to kill me in college. I write good notes once and after that I have got it.
I am with my mom and grandmother a lot. They are my road dogs. We go shopping, out to eat, or just sit in the park and talk about life. It is going to be hard to leave them and be 14 hours away.
I am going to Wartburg College in Iowa because it has a good science program and gave me the biggest scholarship. I want to go to med school and become an orthopedic surgeon. I can watch surgeries all day long and have always been fascinated with science and the human body. I did sports medicine at Vigor for three years working with the football and basketball teams. My friends and I started the girls training club. We would give the football players water and they would throw the bottles on the ground. We did not pick them up because that was disrespectful. Coach Scott punished the whole team and they didn’t mess with us anymore.
We have labels we are faced with. Millennials, failing school, and we don’t care about anything. My Valedictorian speech is about those labels. If we were a failing school, no one would be graduating. We want an education like the kids from Baker and Mary G Montgomery high schools where most of the students are white. We only have two AP classes at Vigor, government and literature. People always ask me why I am at Vigor and not Baker or MGM or private school. I don’t like big schools. Vigor’s faculty care so much about the ones who are trying to do well. There are kids at Vigor who are trying to be successful and I don’t think we should be overlooked. There are also kids here who don’t think they can get out and do better. I want to show them that we can. I think I did okay.”