“They took me in and embraced me to the fullest and also pushed me to the best of my abilities.”–Isaiah Powell,'10
Upon presentation of Isaiah's diploma, this speech was delivered at the Class of 2010 Graduation by faculty member Kerry McQuarrie:
“Athletics is an important part of Isaiah’s life. Whether it is on the Chapin baseball, soccer or basketball teams or his AAU team, Isaiah gives 100%. Watching him shoot and score is like seeing pure fluid motion. But Isaiah is so much more than his athleticism. He has a great sense of humor, he’s a wonderful big brother, has a strong commitment to his faith and a determination to succeed.
As Michael Jordan said, "Obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it." Hmmm. Sounds like Isaiah may have used a play from Michael Jordan’s playbook. You see, Isaiah set some very specific goals for himself the past few years and he was bound and determined to meet them. Whenever he felt he might be straying from the course he had set, he would ask what he should do to get back on track and then without fanfare he would do what needed to be done. It wasn’t always easy and I’m sure Isaiah would have rather been shooting basketballs, but he kept his eye on the prize and kept working.
Isaiah, as you wrote in your advice to the class of 2011, “Stay focused on the big picture…don’t let anything get in your way of you achieving your goals.” You certainly have credibility to be giving this advice. You should be so proud of what you have accomplished; I know the Chapin community is. As you leave us and head off to secondary school, I wish you the best and leave you with the words of Tommy Lasorda: “The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a person’s determination.” If this is true, then there will be no "impossible" for you.