Eighth grade students – members of the Class of 2023 – celebrated an important milestone in their academic careers during a moving-up ceremony on June 19 before an audience of friends, family and administrators. The students will embark on the next phase of their educational journey as high school freshmen in the fall.
Select student representatives – Jake Berman, Savannah Delli Colli, Hope Hershberg and Timothy Lockwood – addressed their classmates and reflected on their experiences in middle school. They acknowledged their parents, teachers and friends for instilling confidence in them, supporting their passions and interests and encouraging them during their years of growth.
“I have had many great inspirational teachers this year and throughout middle school,” Berman said. “I thank them all for sparking the desire to be a better person and inspiring me to achieve my life goals.”
The students also spoke about their tightknit school community, the bonds they’ve shared with their classmates and the opportunities they’ve had to selflessly serve others – from volunteering in soup kitchens and nursing homes to donating canned foods for people in need. They also addressed the importance of learning from their mistakes, accepting new opportunities and growing along the way. They assured their peers that they’re ready to take on the next stage in their educational journey as high school freshmen in September.
“There have been good times and challenging times, and all of these experiences have taught us how to have fun, focus and work hard,” Hershberg said. “The past three years have set the foundation for not only the next four years, but for the rest of our lives.”
In his address, Principal Dr. Thomas Wilson encouraged the Class of 2023 to pay attention to the small moments that truly make a meaningful, connected life.
“Being present in your own life is the key to happiness, even when you are doing routine and ordinary things,” Wilson said. “It is certainly human to want to be a part of things, but try your best not to become fixated on feeling that you are missing out, because the reality is that you miss out on almost everything that happens in the world, and that should be more than OK with you.”
Signifying the conclusion of one chapter and the beginning of another, the students were called one by one to accept their certificates, which were presented by Marcellus Lessane III, assistant principal of the middle and high schools.
Following the ceremony, the seventh grade class hosted a reception for the graduates and their families.