ECHS Valedictorian Delivers Powerful Graduation Speech

CFBISD’s Early College High School (ECHS) graduate Alem Hadzic delivered a moving speech during his graduation ceremony on May 16 at the Dallas College – Brookhaven campus.

Hadzic, the class valedictorian, began with words of encouragement for his classmates, reflecting on their shared journey and classroom experiences. He then took a deeply personal turn, revealing that his father had been diagnosed with cancer just five months prior. Hadzic chose to keep this a secret from his peers, not wanting anyone to treat him differently because of it. 

“My father died yesterday, May 15, 2024, and I attended his funeral today, right before graduation,” Hadzic emotionally shared. “That’s why my shoes are muddy and my arms are shaking.”

With many tears throughout the audience, Hadzic continued his speech.

“I can’t pretend that I want to be up here doing this speech right now, but I can’t throw away something that he worked so hard for me to achieve,” he explained. “So I’m going to go to college and work every hour of every day to achieve all of my goals. Because that’s what he wanted and I’m going to do it for him.”

Hadzic concluded by urging his classmates to cherish their loved ones. The emotional vulnerability and dedication to his father’s dreams left a lasting impression on the audience. His powerful words even caught the attention of FOX 4 News, who recently interviewed him and shared footage of his speech.

In the fall, Hadzic will embark on his journey at the University of Texas at Austin to pursue a degree in chemical engineering. Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD is incredibly proud of Alem and all of our graduates who will cross the stage this month.