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May 3, 2013

Senior to Senior: Soon-to-be grads get advice from elders

CLAREMORE —

As another school year comes to a close, high school seniors prepare themselves for life after graduation. Faced with more responsibilities and decisions, the transition can be a difficult one to make for students.
Senior citizens of Rogers County offered some advice to help with those transitions.
“Keep your body and mind healthful and get as much education as possible because this life can be tougher than hell,” said retired Lt. Col. U.S. Army Raymond Venn. “Whether it’s through college or a vocational school, earn a job that you can be proud of.”
Margaret Walker, 91, said to work a part-time job while going to school.
“Keeping a part-time job will help you stay on a schedule and give you some extra spending money.”
Larry Green, retired pipe and electrical designer, said young people should try to develop a sense of humor.
“We’re only here on this earth for a short while so enjoy it; learn to laugh at yourself sometimes.”
Retired college administrator and counselor Jack Beadles said there is no secret to success after high school. 
“The advice I would give is pretty standard. Stay in school, set goals and work hard to accomplish those goals,” said Beadles.
Another county resident Lois Blakely advised not to take out more student loans than needed.
“Students are graduating college now with more than $50,000 in debt and because of interest it takes them years to pay it off,” she said.  Blakely’s son is a student at Claremore High School and was recently the male role in the school’s production of Annie Get Your Gun. Many of the senior citizens had family members who currently attend Claremore schools or who are graduating this year. 
A majority of the elders reminded graduates that it is OK to make mistakes as long as they learn from them.

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