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Joplin High student speakers prepare to share stage - KOAM TV 7

Joplin High student speakers prepare to share stage with President of the United States

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Each year the President selects three schools to deliver a commencement address at their gradation.

Tonight he'll be in Joplin at a highly anticipated ceremony.

The deadly May 22nd tornado struck shortly after the conclusion of Joplin High's 2011 graduation.

This year's ceremony will be filled with somber remembrance and hope for the future.

The President of the United States is also taking part in the school graduation.  It's an honor usually bestowed on colleges like Hampton University or Arizona State.

A handful of graduating seniors will get the chance to speak alongside the president.

We talked to them about how it feels to share the stage with one of the most powerful people in the world.

"People can see that the 'big dogs' do care about us," says Chloe Hadley, the JHS Senior Class President.  "I think it's really cool, awesome on his part."

"When I first told my grandfather he said 'I can't remember who spoke at my graduation but if it was the President  of the United States I'm pretty sure I'd remember,'" says Derek Carter, a top 5 student.  "This is definitely something I think will make it very memorable and something that will make it a special night."

"My speech has a main theme or message of taking action, not being complacent or content with the world and the way it is right now, and really just wanting to step out make an impact and leave a legacy," says Valedictorian and Student Council President Julia Lewis.

The President will deliver Joplin High's commencement address tonight at Missouri Southern.

We'll bring you that coverage live on KOAM and Fox 14.

Doors for the graduation open at 4:30 p.m. and close at 6:45 p.m.

Parking maps and entrance information can be found on the schools website:  JoplinSchools.org

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