The 2018 senior class officially became graduates on May 24 at this year’s graduation ceremony. Despite unseasonably cold and windy weather, attendees flocked to the Mountain Winery in Saratoga to see the Class of 2018 take this pivotal step in their young lives.
Accompanied by the Harker Chamber Orchestra’s performance of “Pomp and Circumstance,” the seniors made their way to their seats, cheered on by their families and friends. Andrew Semenza’s evocative valedictorian address – which referenced everything from experimental neurosurgery to structuralist literature to Russian master pianist Sviatoslav Richter – was a paean to imperfection, in which he opined, “When we think of irregularity as dirty, we endanger everything.”
Keynote speaker Tanya Schmidt ’08, the first upper school graduate to give a keynote speech at graduation, advised the graduates not to be afraid of unexpected changes. “Have the courage to be curious, and make space to listen to yourself,” she said.
Giving his first graduation address as head of school, Brian Yager imparted upon the graduates his hope that they would work to better the world “not because of the compensation for doing so, but in spite of it” as well as “continually experience and contribute to the power of love.” After receiving their diplomas (to wild cheers from friends and family), the students moved their tassels leftward and flung their caps into the air. Congratulations!