May 22, 2019


By Neal A. Shipman
Farmer Editor

Graduation is one of the highlights that many families have as they have the opportunity to watch their son, daughter, relative or a friend walk across the stage to receive their high school or college diploma. And this weekend, as high schools across McKenzie County hold their graduation ceremonies, gymnasiums will be filled with proud spectators beaming with pride on the accomplishments of the Class of 2019.
As a parent, I’ve attended countless graduation ceremonies. But this past week my wife, Lisa, and I had the opportunity to watch our youngest son, Jason, walk across the stage at the Moby Arena in Fort Collins, Colo., as he was presented with his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine diploma from the Colorado State University College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
Seeing Jason achieve his lifelong dream of becoming a veterinarian brought back the same feeling of pride that we had experienced when our oldest son, Justin, received his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of North Dakota School of Medicine & Health Sciences three years ago.
And to make Jason’s graduation even more special was watching Justin be able to be part of his younger brother’s hooding ceremony. It was a moment that no amount of words can ever describe.
For Jason, while in high school, he decided that he wanted to be a veterinarian. He knew that the career path that he was choosing was not an easy one. He knew he had to study hard and earn high grades in high school and then continue that academic success through four years of college, with the hope of scoring high enough in the national exam to be one of the few of the thousands of applicants each year who try to get accepted into a veterinary school.
For his eight years of hard work in high school and college, Jason was offered a spot to attend the highly prestigious Colorado State University veterinary school and to become a part of the school’s Class of 2019. And last Friday, his dreams of becoming a veterinarian became a reality.
And now Dr. Jason Shipman is poised to start his life’s work of caring for small animals in a veterinary practice in Rapid City, S.D.
Like so many parents, who watch their children graduate, these are special times. They are proud times. And they are truly times of celebration.
Graduation, whether it be from grade school, high school or college, marks a significant chapter in our children’s lives and the start of a new beginning. The choice, of course, is what do these young adults do with their choices.
Here is hoping that the Class of 2019 finds much success in all that they choose to do with their lives.