Eight-year-old dreams greet Port Clinton graduates

PORT CLINTON Ten-year-old Kayla Collins thought she would still love "Days of Our Lives" a
Sarah Weber
May 24, 2010



Ten-year-old Kayla Collins thought she would still love "Days of Our Lives" and "The Rosie O'Donnell Show" in 2009.

She thought she would have a PT Cruiser and be best friends with the same group she hung out with in fifth grade.

Sitting among a class of 124 Port Clinton High School graduates on Saturday afternoon, she realized times change, but some things stay the same. She still likes basketball and softball and the color green.

Collins was reminded of how far she's come thanks to a time capsule project she did in Linda Valasek's fifth-grade class. She was one of several students surprised to find the time capsules on their chairs at graduation practice Thursday morning.

"It's fun to see how things were before," she said, playing with a small plastic palm tree she got at a friend's slumber party.

Collins plans to attend Bowling Green State University to study athletic training.

She and her classmates bonded before going their separate ways in the world by camping out on the school's front lawn last week.

Nick Passabet, the class valedictorian, said it was a night he would remember for a long time.

In his graduation speech he talked about how graduation is often talked about as an end, but it's also a beginning.

"We have a lot to look forward to," he said.

Passabet plans to attend Tulane University after graduation. He is undecided about his major, but thinks he will study music or humanities.

Senior guidance counselor Heidi Steyer said Port Clinton's 125th graduating class is a determined and tight-knit group. They are going into a variety of fields and will represent the school well in the future.

"They have a lot of respect for each other," she said. "Even with the different paths they are taking they are pretty bonded."