Head of School Paul J. Stellato presided over the Class of 2020's long-awaited on-campus Commencement on Saturday, August 1, in stirring remarks that acknowledged the graduates' resilience and drive. “...in ways that other classes have not had to experience, you have become veterans of the inevitability of change: you have lived and breathed it and shaped it to your will. In hours and days stolen from you, you have taken them back and made them your own,” Mr. Stellato noted. His full remarks are linked here, along with links to a Commencement photo album and the livestream recording.
To the Princeton Day School Community:
On Saturday, August 1, the Princeton Day School campus came alive with its first official gathering of students and families since our doors closed for Spring Break on March 6. Under blue skies at 9am, the exceptional Class of 2020 gathered with their immediate families and select faculty and guests for their on-campus Commencement. Accompanied by a student quartet directed by Dr. Tomasz Rzeczycki, the graduates processed on the Colross lawn. Acting Head of Upper School Chris Rhodes announced each student as they stood for their diploma photographs before joining their families for the remainder of the brief program. My welcoming remarks are shared in full here.
Selected student speakers Maggie Madani '20 and Tommy Bocian '20 reflected on fond memories of times together and the impact on the Class of the societal reckonings catalyzed by the pandemic and the powerful movement to end systemic racism. Introduced by Class President Eric Leung '20, Upper School history department faculty member Dt. Michael Friedman reminded the Class of the intersection of parenting and educating, in which parents and teachers have sought to shape and guide each Class member to leave this place and make our world kinder, more beautiful and more just. Board Chair Dr. Rebecca Bushnell '70 noted that, although the students' plans for the coming year may not be what they imagined only a few months ago, they would surely once again rise to the occasion and create for themselves opportunities to learn, form new relationships and make a difference in the world.
To view some of the images of this unique Commencement captured by professional photographer George Chambers, see this Flickr album link; additional photos are being added throughout the week, so please continue to check for the complete album. To view the Commencement livestream, which has been viewed more than 500 times on Saturday and since then as a permanent Youtube link, click here.
Paul J. Stellato
Head of School