NHS Hosts Banquet, Lewis Advises There Are No Shortcuts

Image: Keland Lewis — 2000 IHS graduate, Keland Lewis, gave heartfelt advice to the graduating seniors.

Keland Lewis — 2000 IHS graduate, Keland Lewis, gave heartfelt advice to the graduating seniors. (Anne Sutherland)

As friends and family gathered around the tables at IHS on Thursday night, the local National Honor Society hosted the 20th annual banquet honoring the students in the association followed by the induction ceremony for next year’s officers and new members.

Among the distinguished guests present was Keland Lewis, IHS graduate of 2000. Lewis, the speaker for the banquet, was introduced as a “hard worker filled with determination” by NHS member Megan Hopkins. Lewis attended University of Texas and graduated in 2004 with a Bachelor of Arts in Government with a minor in History. In 2008, he graduated cum laude from Texas Southern University Thurgood Marshall School of Law. He now practices law in Dallas.

“This is home. This is where it all began,” Lewis began his speech. He had been at that exact point where the current graduating seniors are now. “All of this is an important step to your future. A step not so long ago where I was. Wrestling with the same questions you are asking now. How do I get from here to success? There is no easy answer. There is no black or white, only a complex definition. The advice I want to give you is to define success within your own terms. What is your definition? You are the ones who will work hard for it. It is good to listen and discern from others but you have to decide what your purpose is. Not someone else. The Greek philospher, Aristotle, said, ‘Where your talents and world’s needs cross, there lies your calling.” You should find your own passions for your purpose. Remember that nothing in this world comes easy. Don’t let advertisements fool you. You already know hard work brings success. That’s why you are here right now. The only limitations that you have are the ones you place upon yourself." Lewis commended the students and congratulated the seniors for reaching graduation.

In an earlier interview, Lewis wanted to advise the graduates, “To always dream big and realize there are no short cuts to your dream. Only hard work and focus will get you to your goals.”

Mrs. Tina Richards introduced awards for the members:

Most Outstanding Leadership-Chase Michael
Most Oustanding Service-Megan Hopkins and Craig Wright
Most Outstanding Character-Clay Major
Most Outstanding Scholarship-Chase Michael
Highest Grade Point Average-Junior-Brandon Owens
Highest Grade Point Average-Senior-Tyler Boyd
Most Outstanding Member of 2008-09-Tyler Boyd

Mrs. Richards ended the banquet with the presentation of collars for the graduating seniors. We quickly adjourned to the band hall for the induction of new members and officers, which was followed by a reception in the library.