Family and togetherness were big themes for 25 graduating seniors during Sunday's 34th commencement of The Community School held inside the school gym, on a wet day.
Listen to some of the quotes taken from Sunday's ceremony on the Sun Valley campus:
· Ricki Eshman: "The Class of 2010 is truly a family. Over the years we have formed a cohesive unit while maintaining our separate identities."
· Madison Murach: "There have been ups and downs, but our class has always stuck together."
· Head of School Andy Jones-Wilkins said in opening remarks about the grads: "They are happy being together."
The graduating class was also happy coming up with its unique slogan, or, as Wyatt Bunce explained it, "Every class has its own flavor—ours is Class of 2010, Ballpoint Pen."
Families and friends, more than 500 people in all, celebrated a special day for the seniors. A highlight was a musical performance by Noah Koski, Tyler Davis, Jamie Jameson, Morgan Pintler and Hailey Zanes.
Commencement speaker John Rember, a Sawtooth Valley writer, teacher and one of the first Community School counselors 35 years ago, shifted the podium and spoke directly to the graduates. He said, "You will not fulfill your life until you have found out what you have to give to those around you—and have given it."
Rember listed 10 rules he said are "designed to improve your life stories," including:
(1) If it's the wrong thing to do, don't do it; (2) if it's not the truth, don't say it; (5) get a job during college and vacations; (7) don't start anything you can't finish; (8) pay attention; (9) don't limit your plans to what you're sure you can do; and (10) embrace grief when it comes.
Melissa Becker and Tanner Flanigan made the Yearbook Dedication—the only graduation award decided by the student body—to technology director and 14-year "Man Behind the Curtain" Michael Beesley and college counselor Bob Brock, he of the "Cutthroat Pride Will Never Die" T-shirt.
As its senior gifts, the Class of 2010 represented by Madison Murach, Tyler Davis and Hailey Zanes gave the school a tetherball, a "star" purchased on the Internet and a donation to Sun Valley Adaptive Sports.
Faculty speaker Chris McAvoy, completing seven years as history teacher and head of community service, encouraged the graduates in the love of nature and outdoors, love of community and love of ideas.
Head of School Jones-Wilkins brought Senegalese exchange student and star basketball player Daniel Gomis up on the stage, saying that Gomis "has brought great joy" to the school over the year.
Board chairman Jack Bunce announced the seniors receiving their diplomas or, as Noah Koski said to classmates during his senior speech, "Starting today, your egg is hatched."
Giving Sundayâ€™s â€śSenior Performance,â€ť are, from left, Tyler Davis, Jamie Jameson, Morgan Pintler, Hailey Zanes and Noah Koski.
Cutthroat award recipients
The Upper School faculty selected most of the award and scholarship winners revealed during Sunday's two-hour and 25-minute commencement and also during Friday's awards program in the school gym.
Wyatt Bunce received The Beaupre Award, the school's oldest honor. It goes to seniors with high standards of scholarship, leadership, citizenship and athletic achievement.
Tanner Flanigan accepted the Head of School Award. Chosen by Jones-Wilkins, the award goes to the sophomore, junior or senior who has made a difference in school life. Joining Jones-Wilkins on stage for the presentation were the three previous recipients—Bronwen Raff 2009 (Tufts University), Emily Eshman 2008 (Duke), and Grayson Palmer 2007 (Colby College).
Senior Project honors went to Jon Atkinson, Nellie Brown, Kayla Cloud, Erica Eshman and Maggie Flood. The Bill Benjamin Memorial Scholarship for Senior Project Proposals was given to Kayla Cloud.
Drama teacher Fritz Brun with his usual flair presented the 19th Tom Johnson Memorial Awards for excellence in performing arts to Noah Koski and Hailey Zanes.
Tanner Flanigan accepted the Laura Flood Memorial Award announced by her sister, Heather Flood Daves of TCS Class of 1986.
Works of Grace Foundation scholarships for children of teachers were presented to Nellie Brown of this year's class, plus Caspar Brun and Keller Gibson of last year's class, and Connor Brown of the 2008 class.
Kerry Lee Nelson received this year's Idaho Mountain Express Award in the amount of $1,000. The award has been given since 1988 to a graduate likely to contribute to the community in the future.
Winner of the 20th Dixie Grabos Memorial Award for the appreciation and love of literature and writing was Kayla Cloud. Jon Atkinson earned the Trophy Sagebrush Award for imagination as a vital part of education.
Maggie Flood received the Klingelhofer Senior Speech award in memory of George Klingelhofer. It is given for the best senior speech of the year.
Selected as graduating winners of the Peggy and Sigi Engl Memorial Achievement Awards were Nellie Brown and Anita Vorsteveld. The Engl awards, announced by Michael Engl, go to students at each grade level who demonstrate significant improvement in performance through effort, determination and hard work.
Other recipients of the Engl prize at Friday's assembly: Junior class, Chelsea Cloud and Carson Caraluzzi. Sophomore class, Reta Flynt and Colin Waycott. Freshman class, Taylor Figge and Zachary Lindahl. Eighth grade, Lily Gillespie and Sam Rogers. Seventh grade, Anna Dunn and George Everitt. Sixth grade, Samantha Bunting and Griffin Curtis.
Michael Engl hands one of two Engl Memorial Achievement Awards given to seniors to Nellie Brown.
Memorial scholarships were a big part of school awards.
Lena Perenchio was selected for the Carrie Bashaw Hislaire Memorial Scholarship.
Recipient of the Karen Wright Cardozo Memorial Scholarship was Will Harder. Tate Boley earned the Greg Allison Memorial Scholarship.
Sofia DeWolfe and Kelly Hennessy accepted the David Dorward Memorial Scholarships, and the Tom Bloomfield Memorial Scholarship went to Emily Williams.
Tom Crosby received the Philip B. Detwiler Memorial Scholarship, and Zana Davey won the Fredrick Chandler Memorial Scholarship.
Book awards, special school and local grants included:
Audrey Kirk was the Dollars for Scholars recipient for 2010. The Ketchum/Sun Valley Rotary Club scholarships were presented to Melissa Becker, Audrey Kirk and Hailey Zanes. Zanes also earned the Sawtooth Board of Realtors scholarship.
Melissa Becker and Audrey Kirk accepted the Hailey Rotary Club grants. Hailey Zanes took the Wood River Medical Society scholarship. The Wood River Odd Fellows and Rebekahs scholarship was presented to Anita Vorsteveld.
Honored by the Sun Valley Center for the Arts Scholarship Program were Barrett Brown, Nellie Brown and Bryce Ervin.
Book awards went to Kelly Hennessy (Wellesley College), Julianna Lamb (Smith College), Zana Davey (Williams College), Bryce Ervin (Colby College), Meredith Pintler (Whitman College), Bria Gillespie (College of Idaho) and Emily Williams (Grinnell College).
Given for the 27th year, faculty scholarships were awarded to Maddie Nelson, Taylor Adler, Zoey Olbum and Eric Runkel. Freya Dickey received the Class of 2005 Scholarship. The Anne Reed Gallery Award went to Nellie Brown.
Head of School Scholarship recipients were Kyla Jarrett, Meredith Pintler and Taylor Adler. They are continuing scholarships through graduation. Leadership Scholars were Taylor Adler and Zana Davey.
Winners of Middle School Community Awards were Hayley Murach (eighth grade), Maddie Nelson (seventh grade) and Lilly Jenner (sixth grade).
The Iconoclast Award went to Olivia Ott, and The Green Scholarship to Sofia DeWolfe.
Earning Bob Doyle Service Awards were Alexandra Harten and Zana Davey. A faculty award called Great Day Chair for Excellence and Leadership went to Scott Runkel. Outstanding Barn Sale Volunteer Award winners were Chari Inman and Cameron Jenner.
Other community service awards were:
· Platinum (100-plus hours): Camille Bourret, Carson Caraluzzi, Zana Davey, Katie Dumke, Bryce Ervin, Taylor Figge, Emily Gillespie, Kyla Jarrett, Julianna Lamb, Austin Nalen, Kerry Lee Nelson, Gabi Perenchio, Meredith Pintler, Morgan Pintler, Isobel Pollock, Emily Williams and Hailey Zanes.
· Gold (50-plus hours): Taylor Adler, Eli Albarran, Jon Atkinson, Morgan Atkinson, Jackson Bates, Melissa Becker, Collette Block, Nellie Brown, Maddie Caraluzzi, Sophia Carkonen, Cassidy Carson, Hannah Conn, Chelsea Cloud, Paul Davis, Jordan Fitzgerald, Tanner Flanigan, Reta Flynt, Fynn Funke-Riehle, Bria Gillespie, Alexandra Harten, Kelly Hennessy, Dane Inman, Tim Kanellitsas, Tony Martin, Zoey Olbum, Dylan Prescott, Logan Shipley, Daniela Stokes, Ellie Swanson, Jack Swanson, Colin Waycott and Emma Wilander.
· Silver (35-plus hours): McKenna Anderson, Wyatt Bunce, John Chrysikopoulos, Griffin Curtis, Lukas DeWolfe, Freya Dickey, India Emerick, Ricki Eshman, Natalie Goddard, Georgy Goodwin, Ben Kanellitsas, Audrey Kirk, Noah Koski, Zach Lindahl, Gray Riedinger, Hailey Rheinschild, Claire Siderman, Rocket Stickney and Hunter Weaver.
· Bronze (25-plus hours): Sofia DeWolfe, Kristian DeWolfe, Julia Doan, Katie Feldman, Jay Fitzgerald, Chloe Francois, Daniel Gomis, Jack Goodwin, Erin Hennessy, Wayne Poulsen, Gina Rickling, Eric Runkel, Alex Sloan, Averell Tian, Sarah Williams and Colby Wright.