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McCann Technical School awarded diplomas to 110 members of the class of 2024 on Wednesday at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.

McCann Graduates Urged to Make the World a Better Place

By Tammy DanielsiBerkshires Staff
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Look for more photos of the graduation. 
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The 110 graduates of the McCann Technical School class of 2024 were greeted with cheers as they entered the Amsler Center Gym on Wednesday night. 
"It's a distinct honor to be here to see a class that has worked diligently over the last four years to be successful tonight," said Superintendent James Brosnan. "And for family members and friends to be here to share this opportunity with you."
Diplomas and awards were presented by Brosnan and School Committee Chair Gary Rivers. Graduate Kaitlyn Thomson offered a stirring rendition of the national anthem and Brayden Reed was singled out by Principal Justin Kratz for having perfect attendance for all four years. The principal also recognized retiring school Librarian Rick Moon.
Kratz thanked Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts for lending them the space for graduation, joking with the crowd — fanning themselves with programs and diplomas in the steamy gym — that McCann's would have been 30 degrees hotter. 
Rivers asked the class to stand so the crowd could applaud them on their "tremendous accomplishment" that included earning certifications in their majors and competing in SkillsUSA and Business Professionals of America. 
"Your graduation is not only a celebration of your academic achievements in technical expertise, but it's also a testament to your character, perseverance and resilience," he said. "Despite the challenges and obstacles you may face, you have shown strength, courage and determination to succeed."
He encouraged them to embrace opportunity and pursue their dreams, goals and passions.
Hard work and gratitude were particular themes, with valedictorian Amy Lynn Harrington reminding her classmates that other students across the world are struggling with violence and oppression. 
"Our diplomas serve as a reminder of how lucky we are to have made it to graduation," she said, but there were also teachers and others who pushed them to do better. 
"Thank them for caring, for pushing you to be the best person of yourself, for not giving up on you," said Harrington. "Because believe me, there are students out there who did not have anyone looking out for them, who didn't make it to their graduation."
Never settle for mediocrity, she said, and never let bigotry or hatred gain way and prevent them from seeing people as human. 
"Use your privilege to make the world a better place for the people who need it most," Harrington said. "No matter what happens in life, never take what you have for granted. ...
"Take chances, make mistakes and never leave yourself wondering what if?"
Salutatorian Svea-Marie Meaghan Lawson said it was "mind-blowing" that they had finally made it to graduation after a high school career that started off on Zoom because of the pandemic. 
"It was a bizarre time. Some of you may have thrived, others of you may have struggled. Either way we have all made it to the special day today," she said. "We have all grown immensely in both knowledge and character. 
"It has been such a joy to see some of you recognize your potential and use your passions and talents to actually flourish as wonderful individuals. Our journey together has shaped us into exceptionally compassionate, resilient and mature young adults."
Lawson also recognized the influence and support the class received from family, staff and faculty the past four years. 
"I speak on behalf of every graduate here when I say that you are already appreciated," she said. "We cherish your investment in us and our success. None of us would be here today. If you did not have your support and encouragement for that we've been doing."
Kratz in his final comments told the students that they should learn how to disagree, a thought that had been sparked by a conversation about Star Wars. If they could disagree about Star Wars and still get along, surely people can over much less important things, he said. 
"I want to encourage you all to put some energy into figuring out how to disagree with others in an artful, meaningful, polite, respectful, because disagreements aren't a bad thing," he said. "Disagreements can be positive and they can lead to stronger convictions of what you believe, they can lead to understanding other people's side. ...
"You'll see disagreement running everywhere, disagreements that are uncivil. unkind, sometimes vicious. I urge you to set a different tone and a different path for ways that we disagree with each other."
The graduates of McCann Technical School
Ty Richard Barrett
Jeffrey Joseph Daignault
Emily lda Feder
Carter Terrance Graves
Julia Ann Kowalczyk
Jared Lescarbeau-Mason
Brian Lescarbeau-Mason
Madison Rose Rathbun
Katherine Richardson
Tristan Emory Scholl
Olivia Marie Alfonso
Caiden Joseph-Steven Carrigan
Arianna Rose Hamilton
Marah Jean Keeler
Connor James Lee
Charles Hunter Leonard
Richard Thomas Mazzeo
Connor Jonathan Packard
Kaitlynn Rose Varcoe
Ryan Henry Whalen
Emma Irene Arnold
Marissa Grace Berger
Tiana Lee Carver
Anali Marie Chittenden
Mia Elyise Codogni
Jaelyn Layne Deeley
Emily Anne George
Jazzmyn May Valego
Reese Charles-Ames Wehrle
Lillian Wirtes
Nolan C Abuisi
Hayden Anthony Boucher
William Dakota-Charles Braman
Troy Michael Chilson
Hayden Jon Clayborn
Dominic Joseph DeMayo
Christopher Stephen Eichorn
Jacob Johnathan Howland
Brandon Abel Miller
Jaden Paul Perras
Joseph Romey Roy
Averen Michael Superneau
Kaitlyn Nicole Thormson
Brianna Joan Wehrle
Brenden Edward Ames
Shaun Brian Astorino
Austin Michael Buda
Abigal Lynn DelRatez
Ricardo Alexis Raymond Diaz
Nicholas Trevor Gilman
Gisella Autumn Hildabrand
Ariel Bodhi Lachman
Svea-Marie Meaghan Lawson
Collin John Layden
Joshua Patrick McGrory
Matthew Virncent Melito
Landon Matthew Millington
Ashlee Marie Nicol
Michael Andrew Parkman
Eric Jeffrey Puntin
Brayden Michael Reed
Keeghen Peter Scott
Jada Michele Stoppiello
Chloe Anne Boulger
Jocelyn Emma Goodell
Sara Theresa King
Zachary Michael LaRose
Walter Russell Mazza III
Kelson Angel Auger
Christopher Ryan Brockway
Henry John Daniels
Jonathan Jacob Durocher
Kaden Scott Gallagher
Carter David LaCasse
Gavin Todd LaFarest
Nikolai Efim Mendel
Ashton James Peck
Noah Michael Rozon
John Edward Trinder
Brady Edward Vallieres
Shane Steven Wade
Connor Mark Walden
Brian William Whitney
Addison Chen
Emma Nichole Dupuis
Amy Lynn Harrington
Alexa Kathleen Heidel
Courtney Elizabeth Kanelos
Maggie Anne Little
Rileigh Jo Norcross
Michael Preston Oakes
Malia Rose Rand
Miranda Rae Ranzoni
Anthony Tyson Selby
Athena Elizabeth Shafer
Troy Michael Tassone
Rebecca Barbara Vallieres
Khloe Marie Varnuni
Hannah Payton Boisvert
Jesse Louis Brazee
Brodie Jacob Cooper
Braley Ann Cox
Ethan Elder Gagne
Andrew Martin Haskins
Daniel Joseph Haskins
Aiden Kimball Macpherson
Taenb Jonathan Howfand
Sarah Ashley Nimmons
Zoey Elizabeth Shafer
Avianna Marie Sobieski
Sabriel Jaymee Spencer

Tags: graduation 2024,   McCann,   

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Thunderstorms Leave Downed Trees, Wires and Debris Across North County

By Tammy DanielsiBerkshires Staff

A tree limb smashed in the cab on Mark Moulton's truck. 
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A severe thunderstorm hammered parts of North and Central County on Tuesday night, downing trees and limbs and leaving more than 8,000 customers without power. 
The Berkshires, Eastern New York and parts of Southern Vermont were under a severe thunderstorm watch until 9 p.m. on Tuesday. The storm came through shortly after 6 p.m. with thunder and lightning and torrential rain. 
Alerts and calls began streaming into dispatch and fire and police departments began calling in extra help. 
When the rain let, the full extent of the damage could be seen — from uprooted century-old trees to scatterings of debris across streets and lawns. 
As of 8:30, Brooklyn, Hoosac, Meadow, North Eagle just above Hospital Avenue were closed and the lower section of North Eagle was limited to one-way traffic. Trees were also down on Holbrook, Chestnut and Hall. 
Mayor Jennifer Macksey had been getting a close-up look at the damage and speaking with residents. 
"I've been trying to hit as many streets as I can so I have couple more streets to hit before I call it a night," the mayor said just before 9 p.m.
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