Lt. Governor Reeves speaks at BA commencement
by Courtney Warren
May 18, 2014 | 2534 views | 0 0 comments | 28 28 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Bayou Academy seniors were given words of encouragement from a rather special commencement speaker on Friday night.

Lieutenant Governor of Mississippi Tate Reeves gave the commencement address and through his speech he told the graduates the importance of dreaming big.

Reeves began his address by encouraging the graduates to applaud those that got them there.

"You've worked hard for this moment and you should enjoy it but don't ever forget that it was a team effort. Your parents, your grandparents, and your teachers provided support along the way...without them you would not have been as successful as you have been," he said

Reeves continued on to say there are many opportunities right here in the state of Mississippi.

"Many of you will leave here for one of our fine community colleges or universities and some of you may even be ready to jump into the work force. I'm pleased to report to you that our state, our great state, Mississippi, is not only doing well but also its economy is growing and the possibilities are bright right here at home if you choose to stay," he said.

Reeves said graduates could be Internet moguls, provide advanced healthcare in practice or research, or even be the next reality star if they desired.

"The possibilities for you are truly endless and I want to remind you what is written in the fourth chapter of first Timothy verse twelve. 'Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity,'" he said.

"Don't let anyone use your youth or your age to stop your dreams. When I first ran for statewide office I was 28 years old when I qualified. Now I understand you think 28 is ancient right now but there's going to be a time really soon where 28 doesn't seem that old. When I spoke to my friends and my mentors about running for statewide office at that young age that all thought I was crazy. I was young and no member of my party had ever been elected state treasurer in our state's history. When I qualified to run on March the first, what you do as a political candidate at some times is you sit down and pick up the phone. You make phone calls," Reeves said.

He then explained during his campaigning and calling to ask for assistance in winning he was told many times that he was too young and wouldn't do a good job.

However, he continued on and pursued his dream of running for statewide office and winning.

"There will always be people who tell you you can't accomplish your dreams because you're from Mississippi, you can't accomplish your dreams because you didn't grow up in New York City, or you can't accomplish your dreams because of this reason or that reason. But if you look back to that race in 2003, we did three things. First of all, we were crazy enough to dream big; secondly we were willing to sit down and develop a reasoned plan to accomplish those big dreams; and thirdly we were willing to work hard every single day traveling all over this state asking people for their vote. So if you hear nothing else I say tonight please remember that story," said Reeves.

He said there would always be people saying you can't accomplish something for different reasons but that these graduates could accomplish anything they set their minds to.

"If you're willing to do those three things: dream big, develop a plan, and then work your tail of to accomplish whatever that plan is. You can accomplish anything you want to," he said.

Reeves then said the opportunities are endless in Mississippi and he wants every Mississippian to have those kinds of opportunities in the state.

"Here at Bayou Academy you've learned the skills to excel in the workplace and in the classroom…you now have a great opportunity but with that great opportunity comes great responsibility. You have received a great education from the faculty here. It is now up to you to give back to your community wherever you may land," he said.

The graduates then received their diplomas and tossed their caps into the air as they said goodbye to one another and headed off to chase brand new dreams.