Kent Island High School graduates 278
STEVENSVILLE — Designed caps, families cheering and 278 seniors were all present at the 19th commencement ceremony at Kent Island High school on Friday, June 2.
The soon-to-be graduates proceeded to their seats at the 50-yard line at the school’s stadium with the tune of “Pomp and Circumstance” by Edward Edgar being played by the high school band. Standing throughout the area, parents, grandparents, friends and neighbors yelled names and snapped photos as their loved ones neared, like fans seeing The Beatles pass by.
Principal John Schrecongost began the recognition ceremony saying the nice weather on the evening proved what he had suspected for some time, that Mother Nature was a Buccaneer.
After the singing of the National Anthem by the band and choir accompanied by select senior members of the both, as well as the introduction of guests sitting on the stage, Interim Superintendent Gregory Pilewski addressed the
blue- and white-gowned seniors.
With the capabilities of technology now, Pilweski said someone can Google anything and find an answer, such as how to ask someone on a date, or how to get your parents to give you money. However, one thing that can’t be found through a quick Google search is passion, nor can it be taught.
He encouraged the students to use their passion like “rocket fuel” and to remember that if passion is found, “your profession will find you.”
Bryn Sticker, Class of 2017 president, remarked about how life is full of lists — playlists, shopping lists, birthday lists — and decided to give out one more list: the graduate send-off list.
Show compassion and kindness to others; own your failures and learn from them; seize every opportunity you get; play as hard as you work; share your talents; and do epic were the items on Sticker’s guide.
Cameron Moye, co-salutatorian with Anam Shah, said the phrase, “it’s not how you finish, it’s how you end,” might not ring true on graduation night, as he said everyone is going to end the same: all will walk across the stage, receive a diploma and graduate.
“So today is about how you finish, because while each of us is ending this chapter of our lives the same, we’ve all finished in our own unique way,” Moye said. “Today how you finish is who you are. How you finish is what makes you different than the person sitting next to you.”
He said the uniqueness is what makes everyone great.
Shah thanked her parents for the work they had put in to allow her to be on stage. She spoke about how, after moving from Crofton to Kent Island in middle school, she shocked when it wasn’t palm trees and beaches. She said she was worried about being lonely, but what made this place home was the people.
She warned her peers that they were going to fall down, as everyone does, but that it doesn’t matter how many times they’re down as long as it is one less than the number of times they get up.
Schrecongost said the role of high school principal is not always easy, joking how parents know how creative the students can be, “for a school not just to survive but thrive” needs a strong and positive relationship between him and the class. He said through the students’ daily actions he knew he could trust them.
Not every student/principal relationship can survive turning a truck bed into a pool in the school parking lot, he said.
He said he looked forward to graduation day because of the opportunity it allowed to celebrate them, to “guide you across the stage, shake your hands and wish you the best.”
Schrecongost said the students were prepared for the next stage in their lives and thanked them for the relationship, “the superb leadership, the example you set for the classes to come after you.”
The Kent Island High School Choir, directed by Luke Whitehair, sang an a cappella version of “Best Day of My Life” by American Authors.
As the students walked across the stage, families screamed, said how much they loved them and expressed how proud they were.
After the tassels were turned and the band began “Fanfare and Flourishes,” the 278 seniors that entered the stadium as students departed as graduates.
Follow Mike Davis on Twitter: @mike_kibaytimes.
Even the boys got in on cap decorating for graduation this year at KIHS. Each design showed something unique about each student and their interests. Pictured, from the left, seniors Ammad Butt, Cameron Moye, Nico Teti, Logan Dumenil and Josh Anderson.
Senior class officers and student achievers stand before their classmates, Friday evening, June 2, at Kent Island High School commencement. From the left, Valedictorian Samantha Pauley, Co-Salutatorians Anam Shah, and Cameron Moye, Student Government President Samantha Stershic, and Class President Bryn Stricker. Behind them at the podium, Principal John Schrecongost prepares to welcome all who attended graduation.
With a big smile, graduating KIHS senior Allison Thierry receives congratulations as she carries her diploma from QACPS Interim Superintendent Gregory Pilewski, Friday evening, June 2, during the school’s commencement program.
A selected group of senior band and chorus members performed the National Anthem under direction of Luke Whitehair, former KIHS band director, now choral director at the school.
KIHS Choral Director Luke Whitehair took his seat and enjoyed the performance of his choral group as they performed “Best Day of My Life” during commencement, Friday evening, June 2.
Senior Catherine Gast received congratulations from KIHS Principal John Schrecongost as she carries her diploma, Friday evening, June 2.
Senior Class President Bryn Stricker told her classmates, “Own your failures and learn from them”, as part of her commencement message.
Co-Class Salutatorian Cameron Moye said, “Today, is all about how you finish!” His brief talk was about how unique each individual is.
Student Government President Samantha Stershic thanked many teachers for important life lessons during her years at KIHS, especially, “Always keep your promises!”