A special season is going on right now: high school graduation season.
Throughout the Upper Peninsula, young women and men are being handed something they've earned - their high school diplomas - in ceremonies that mark the end of another school year.
Proud parents, grandparents, siblings and other loved ones are shooting video and snapping photos as fresh-faced, smiling high school seniors become graduates. Family gatherings are happening as are all-night graduation parties, put together by communities to honor their graduates in a safe atmosphere.
It's an exciting and happy time for many and rightly so.
Considering how fragile our world can be, however, this also can be a time of concern as families worry about their youngsters' next steps. Even a four-year college degree is not a guarantee of a secure future any longer.
Another word for graduation is commencement, which is a beginning. Yes, the ceremony is the conclusion of high school days, but it marks the beginning of some decisions that will guide the course of one's lifetime.
We know Upper Peninsula high schools do a wonderful job in providing top-notch learning opportunties for youth. And despite the somewhat shaky state of our world, we have every hope each of our high school graduates will find a path to building a life that will bring them a shiny future.
Congratulations, Class of 2013. We have confidence that your graduation will mark the start of big excitement as you step into your future.