On Friday, June 11, the ConVal High School graduation ceremony was held on the school’s Stadium Field.
In addition to teachers, school administrators, and staff, who wore their academic regalia in honor of the graduates, Superintendent Dr. Kimberly Rizzo Saunders and Assistant Superintendent Dr. Ann Forrest attended the event, representing the SAU leadership.
The official program of the Commencement Exercises can be accessed here.
After the traditional “Pomp and Circumstance” processional by Edward Elgar, the “Star-Spangled Banner” was sung by senior members of the chorus Brigham Boice, Aaliyah Colby, Ashton Laurent, Grace Phillips, and Abby Theberge.
Next, Class President Reid Wilson took the podium for welcome remarks.
Heather McKillop delivered the Principal’s Address to the Class of 2021 which reflected on the theme of “firsts” and how the class had shown strength, determination, and resilience during difficult times.
Madilyn Cilley delivered the Valedictorian Speech in which she contemplated the lessons she learned while attending ConVal Regional High School, both in the classroom and for life.
In her Salutatorian Speech, Aria Frehner painted a rich pastiche of ConVal High School by taking a mental tour of the building and pointing to the specific learning experiences she enjoyed in each of the classrooms, especially in the arts.
Brigham Boice and Jason Bergeron delivered the Student Speech which compared the flu pandemic in 1918 to the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020-2021 and the historical parallels between the experiences of the Peterborough High School Class of 1918 and ConVal’s Class of 2021.
The winner of the Faculty and Staff Award was announced in a laudatory speech by Liz Moore and Brian Moore. The award is given annually at commencement to that graduating senior who, in the collective opinion of the teaching faculty, best represents, in practice and intent, spirit, unselfishness, service, leadership, and accomplishment. This year’s recipient was Abby Theberge who was applauded for “her ability to develop relationships through mutual caring which requires kindness and patience, tolerance, optimism, joy in the other’s achievements, confidence in oneself, and the ability to give without undue thought of gain.”
Judy Heddy was the faculty speaker. Heddy drew on her 44 years of coaching and teaching experineces and spoke to the changes that she and her students witnessed during this time, especially the multiple, rapid transformations during the last year and a half.
For the recorded livestream of the event, please click here.
Thank you to the Class Advisors Gretchen Shippee and Kristin Ingram, to the Class Marshalls Fletcher Maggs and Elias Niemela, to the graduation advisors Deb Coyne and Judy Heddy, to the administrative assistants Lisa Pelkey, Leah Seymour, Brandi Litts, Laura Merzi, and to all others who made the 2021 Commencement Exercises such a memorable event.