ECI 1945 Valedictorian Speech

Estevan Collegiate Institute
Estevan, Saskatchewan, Canada

Mr. Albert (Bert) H. Hogman
Valedictorian, for the 1945 class of ECI Graduates.

Here is Mr.Albert Hogman's speech, sent to my by his son Thomas, who lives only a short distance from me in Prince Rupert BC. Originally written in pencil, it is transcribed here, by Thomas.

Figure it out for yourself my lad,
You have all that the best of men have had,
Two arms, two hands, two legs, two eyes,
And a brain to use if you would be wise.
With this equipment they all began,
So start from the top and say “I can.”
You can triumph and come to skill,
You can be great if only you will,
You're well equipped for what fight you choose,
You have legs and arms and a brain to use,
And the man who has risen, great deeds to do
Began his life with no more than you.

This is a very simple poem. It is straight forward and to the point. There is a great abundance of truth and reality contained within. We as the graduating class have spent some twelve or more years at school. We have had some very good times, some very memorable occasions and some not so pleasant happenings. Looking back over the last four memorable years at high school, I have come to the conclusion that our education did not begin, nor does not end in the classroom. We had sports days, inter-room basketball and extra curricular activities such as serving on the Students’ Council, War Services committee and Collegiate paper. All these duties and pleasures added to our ability and knowledge. It increased our equipment as mentioned in the poem. We have all been learning how to approach life with our two arms of Mathematics, two hands of Science, our two legs of sports, two eyes of History and the mind of literature. The companionship of teacher and student will serve us well, when we assume our places in society as men and women, leaders and as citizens of a better world: better because of the clear thinking and precision of its adults, the youth of yesterday. Now all this seems very well and it pleases us to hear sayings so favorable to us but let me read the last verse of the poem with which I began.

You are the handicap you must face,
You are the one who must choose your place,
You must say where you want to go.
How much you will study the truth to know,
God has equipped you for life,
But He Lets you decide what you want to be.

Mr. Hogman's speech in Adobe format .pdf

Sad to say Mr. Hogman passed away Feb 15th, 2008, But I am sure, some students followed his advice in this speech.


  • Last modified: 2017/08/17 16:33
  • by dlgent