Milton Hershey School Lifer Celebrates Her Story
By Justice Vaux, MHS Senior, Class of 2022
At the age of 5, I never knew that moving to a new school would impact me for the rest of my life. This was the start of a long road that I’ve had the privilege of traveling with my peers—a road that lead me to becoming a lifer. After the many challenges we confronted together, the Class of 2022 can say that we are ready to graduate from Milton Hershey School and launch into the next chapter of our beautiful and unique stories.
In this chapter of my book, I never fully grasped the number of opportunities that presented themselves at MHS. From the various sports teams to the incredible career exploration opportunities and the lifelong connections, MHS has provided us with a golden pathway to success.
The true beauty of MHS, though, is the diversity of the students’ upbringing and what leads them to the school. My story is very different from some of the stories of my peers, but because of MHS and this shared experience, our stories are woven together. These connections that I’ve created over the last 12 years have allowed me to learn the journeys of others—teaching me the value of humility and empathy.
The most important moral value MHS has taught me through these connections is the power of kindness. From the extreme kindness Milton and Catherine Hershey showed when constructing the school, to the gratuitous staff, I have found examples of models that I want to assemble in myself rather than dismantle. I know that I—and each of my classmates—will replicate these models as we move forward.
We need to remember that we are not ending our book at graduation, but simply beginning the next chapter. Our lives await us ahead; these new chapters need to be written. Our determination will prove its strength, our patience will demonstrate its power, and our kindness will display its capability as we move forward, writing the remaining chapters of our books.
To the Class of 2022: thank you for allowing me to be a part of your incredible and inspiring chapters. I cannot wait to see how each of you will write the future chapters in your books. Thank you for playing a significant role in my story and remember, our stories are forever woven together through the memories that we have shared.