Graduation - Moravian Academy - ‘Leave lasting legacy’
“Never forget to leave a lasting legacy,” class of 2019 President Michael Schellenberg concluded his remarks to his graduating classmates at Moravian Academy’s commencement June 1.
The ceremony had been moved indoors to the gymnasium due to the threat of evening showers. The showers never materialized, but the move didn’t seem to dampen the high spirits of the 82 graduates and the packed house of their friends and families.
Schellenberg, who had come to Moravian Academy during his high school career, said he has been impressed by the “incredible sense of community and family” at the school.
He said the class of 2019 is “incredibly smart and dedicated and has great promise.”
It was “filled to the brim with high achievers” who saved some clubs “from the brink of extinction” and started other new clubs. They have been “mentors for those younger than us,” and been “relied upon to get stuff done,” he said.
He praised their accomplishments while slipping a few in-jokes into his talk.
Almost all members of the class are headed to higher education, including to several Ivy League colleges. A number of them will stay in the area, attending Lehigh, Lafayette and DeSales. Two are headed for service academies, one to the Air Force Academy and one to the Naval Academy.
Headmaster Jeffrey Zemsky noted the class included 26 members who joined the class in the past four years, 20 who had been a part of it since middle school, and 19 who came to Moravian in second, third, fourth or fifth grade. He asked 15 “lifers,” who had been there since first grade, kindergarten or preK, to stand and be recognized.
He remarked that “the last class in any decade holds a special place” and said the class of 2019 stood out to him for its vulnerability and for making spikeball “the official sport of Moravian Academy.”
Those in the audience got to know a little bit more about all the class members, as Zemsky gave a short biography of each senior as he or she received a diploma. Those personalized comments, gleaned from teachers and the students’ own comments, touched on their academic prowess, their athletic achievements, their extra-curricular activities and their volunteer work.
He praised their personal qualities, singling out one for “creativity and original thought,” another for a “sense of judgment and wonder,” still another for “brilliance, irreverence and wisdom” and another for being “a supportive and humble friend.”
He mentioned travels to foreign countries for study or charitable endeavors, contributions to winning sports teams, and projects that investigated such issues as “the effect of heat on plastic water bottles” and “why Green Pond is green.”
Before the diplomas were awarded by Christopher Weiler, chair of the Board of Trustees, Zemsky advised the graduates, “May your minds always be independent and your acts always be courageous.”