Thousands of young Mainers are making one of life’s great transitions this month at high school graduations across the state.

Beneath each cap and gown is a story of struggle and triumph, in the classroom, on the playing field and beyond. Some have wrestled with self-doubt, disability or depression. All are hoping for a bright future.

Here are the stories of 11 remarkable members of the class of 2016, including a set of siblings. We asked high school administrators in southern Maine to identify seniors who, because of heart, talent or toughness, are likely to make a difference in the world.

They include three children of immigrants and some from nontraditional families. Their career goals range from raising pigs and driving trucks to healing people and playing the blues. They have already accomplished and overcome much to earn their diplomas, including war, poverty and the loss of parents. And they want to do more.

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