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The Class of 2022 Walks

On the afternoon of May 20, the seniors walked onto the stage of Artis—Naples in front of family, friends, faculty and administrators.

Dr. Watson welcomed all and addressed the Class of 2022 with these words:  “Today I congratulate you on your achievement. You have reached a worthy goal, and you, and the people who supported you along the way—parents, loved ones, faculty mentors, staff who keep our school running, and the administration of this school—all pause to celebrate with you now… On this, your final day as a CSN student, what, we might ask, has been the purpose of your CSN education? The answer is that it has taught you how to think, and how to continue to learn, and how to figure out what to do with that learning to benefit yourself and contribute to the public good.”

The class salutatorian, Sophia Pezeshkan, then stepped to the podium, and spoke directly to her classmates:  “Being on this stage right now is no small feat; CSN continuously challenged every single one of us, and being here illustrates each student’s determination and dedication to make ourselves and the world around us a better place… We have grown as a family, all with cherished memories of each other.  As you continue to excel in the future, don’t forget the friends, family, and mentors who have shaped who you are.”

Valedictorian Heloise Hoffmann followed next, saying, “Teachers, we cannot thank you enough for the impact you had every day in the development of our intellectual thirst and on the maturing of our character.  And as we go off in different directions next fall, we thank our parents who will step aside to make room for our wings…In reality, the best source of learning isn’t a textbook but each other.  This synergistic connection is what has enabled us to form lifelong friendships.   It will also encourage us to collaborate to discover innovative solutions for existential problems of the future…”

It was now Mr. Lewton's turn to award the CSN Prize to a student selected by the faculty and awarded to that member of the senior class whose commitment during his or her tenure at CSN deserves special praise.  Mr. Lewton said of this student, “I do not believe I have ever seen her on campus without a radiant smile on her face.  She is the proverbial girl next door who assimilates with any group because she is always compassionate and cheerful… Yes, her academic achievements are well known, but many of her teachers have shared yet another strength within this student.  While achieving high grades in classes is important to her, she seems to experience equal joy when those around her succeed as well.”  This year’s recipient of the CSN Prize was Heloise Hoffman.

The Maxine Strayer Award is presented each year to a member of the senior class who, by his or her actions, reflects Ms. Strayer's dedication to everything she undertook and love toward everyone she touched.  This award winner was chosen by fellow classmates, and reflects their own interpretation of the qualities of this caring woman who contributed so greatly to the school.  Ms. Rochette presented this award to Douglas Glennon, whose peers described him as respectful, reliable, loyal, focused, driven, inquisitive, and appreciative.

Dr. Watson then returned to center stage to announce the recipient of the  the Headmaster’s Award , which is given to the graduate who, in the opinion of the Senior Leadership Team, most fully represents the school's ideal of the CSN citizen and student: a contributor, a scholar, a future ambassador for the school and an active participant in the life of the school community.  The winner this year was Heloise Hoffmann, who will be attending Stanford University in the fall.

Dr. Watson also asked Sophia Pezeshkan to return to the podium to receive the Lucille Drackett Award for Young Women’s Leadership, which was established to recognize breakthrough leadership exhibited by a female student, achieving success in a field, initiative, or discipline, and creating an example of leadership, opportunity and service for other girls to follow.  It was named in honor of a late CSN grandparent, Board member, noted philanthropist and visionary.

The Pat Stranahan Award recognizes the senior who has demonstrated independence and imagination in the area of service, scholarship and leadership, who exhibits the qualities of clear thinking, a patient and judicious regard for the opinions of others, and a thoroughgoing devotion to scholarship, personal integrity and service to the school.  Jacob Baer received this award, named in honor of the late President of CSN’s Board of Trustees from 1996-2003, Mr. Duane Stranahan Jr., universally known as Pat.

Next, the CSN Director of Media Resources Suzanne Bailey, who has been at the school nearly 21 years herself, spoke about the 13 graduating “lifers,” those students who have been at CSN since Kindergarten or even PreK.  She said, “I have had the privilege of watching our lifers grow up… It’s as if [they] have a second family—a family of 13 who have become like siblings.  These 13 brothers and sisters share nearly a lifetime of memories, and this bond is forever.”

Diplomas were then presented to each of the 83 graduates by Dr. Watson, Dr. Johnson, and the President of the Board of Trustees, Mr. John Allen, bisected by an interlude sung by the senior of the Musical Theatre class.  Finally, Dr. Johnson concluded the ceremony with these remarks:  “Class of ’22, despite the presence of technology as you’ve grown up, you still lived every moment of high school with gusto.  From academics to athletics, musicals to science fairs, you found ways to make the most of every moment together… You didn’t let disappointments, fears or frustrations take you out of the moment, even in the midst of a pandemic.”  Congratulations to the CSN Class of 2022!  Click here to view graduation videos.

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