Graduation 2017

Milton awarded diplomas to 190 seniors during the School’s commencement exercises on June 9, 2017. One longstanding tradition of the ceremony is students electing their student speakers, which assures seniors that they will, at their last Milton gathering, hear from classmates they have chosen. This year, students selected Jacob Atwood and Sophia Wilson Pelton. Delivering the commencement address was alumnus Tze Chun, Milton Academy Class of 1998. An acclaimed artist and filmmaker, Tze Chun began making movies as a Milton student. He went on to major in film studies at Columbia University. Tze’s debut feature film, Children of Invention, premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and went on to be one of the most-awarded and best-reviewed films of the year. Read more about Tze Chun.

View photos from the day.

Watch the Graduation Ceremony

Speech by Jacob Atwood '17

jacob-atwood-webThank you for that kind introduction. I don’t know about you guys but I’m feeling juiced. Literally before I came here, I drank six orange juices and I’m ready to go. So, let’s do this thing. Okay, where are the diplomas? Mr. Bland…are they under here? Oh wait. What? I don’t get to give out the diplomas?   Seriously?   There has been a terrible misunderstanding. Apparently, it turns out I do not, in fact, get to give out the diplomas. Alright, that was unexpected, and I am a little frazzled. I actually had a speech planned for after I handed out the diplomas, but don’t worry I think it all still applies.

Class of 2017 handing out your diplomas was an absolute honor. As I shook the hands of each and everyone of you I could not help feeling… Oh sorry, sorry, clearly doesn’t apply, not relevant. Let me skip forward.

Ok here we go, let’s get back on track and thank a few people.

The first thank you goes out to a very special someone. Actually, five very special someones. I think we all know who I am talking about, thank you Mr. Bland, Mr. Ball, Mr. Heard, Mrs. Bonenfant, and Mr. Ruiz. Seriously someone should put those five on a lunch box. I can picture it vividly. We have Mr. Bland in the middle throwing up two of these (hand gesture) while he is flanked by the rest of his team on the quad with fireworks in the background. It would be awesome.

Thank you also to the Board of Trustees. I can’t put my finger on exactly what you guys do, but I know you do a lot. So, thank you.

Thank you to our guest speaker, Mr. Chun. I want to let you know in advance; I don’t think you’re giving out the diplomas either.

Thank you to the faculty from whom we have learned so much, including the difference between who and whom.

Thank you to our class deans for sticking with us for the last three years. And I am not going to sugar coat it; we have not been an easy class. I mean our class survived through Yik Yak, political unrest, the college process, and puberty. And they coached us through all of that. So, thanks.

And, of course thank you to our loving parents and family members. For a second, I would like to address my parents. Mom, Dad, I love you both so much, and I am so thankful for having you as my parents. Also, I am the one that put the dent in the Mini Van. I know I said Emmie did it, but I actually just backed into a telephone pole. (nod) Sorry, but thank you.

Lastly but certainly not least-ly, I want to thank the Class of 2017. We have achieved a lot in our time here, starting important clubs, putting on great plays, dances, art shows, and concerts, winning a national speech championship, winning many ISL and New England sports championships, and producing hundreds of compelling publications. We have hashed out our differences and come together as one united class… something rare in this world.

Now I want to take us back to a simpler time just four weeks ago. Our class stood together on the field just down that hill. It was our Community Service Day and we were hosting a field day for the second grade of the Taylor School. We each got assigned to a station and the kids moved from one area to the next. I was assigned to the bowling station. I knew one thing that day and one thing only; I wanted to take the bowling station all the way. I wanted kids to go home that day and say “Hey Mom, can I go back to Milton Academy where they have that bowling station?” As kids flowed in, I looked around the field I saw the obstacle course station in full swing, and the cotton candy station, there was even a wet sponge station where some helpless seniors stood and had wet sponges thrown at them. But I was not worried; I knew with the proper attention to detail my bowling station could edge out the competition. Then I heard laughter and felt a cold chill running up my neck. I glanced up Observatory Hill. No, please no! But it was true. The school had hired a bouncy house. Okay relax, I thought, the bouncy house is here but you can still have the best station. As kids flowed in and out of my area, bowling their hearts out on my perfectly organized, fun, and exciting makeshift bowling alley, I was sure that we were going to be the best station.

I pulled aside a Taylor School student, Kyle, and asked him what station was best– expecting him to say the bowling station. Kyle said he liked the whole fair but the bouncy house was his favorite. He informed me that even the walls were bouncy. “Okay KYLE,” I said. He must be an anomaly. As I desperately asked more six-year-olds what station was best, they all said “The bouncy house.” I tried to explain to them that the bouncy house was not a house and was not even that bouncy. They would not have it. Ahh damn that bouncy house and its bouncy walls.

As the day came to a close I realized the bowling station would not be the best one. My first emotion… disappointment. My second emotion was sadness. My third emotion was disappointment again. My station was not the best. I am guessing it was a close second. Okay, maybe third– the obstacle course looked pretty cool too. But regardless I had set a goal to be the best and it seemed, although I was close, I would not realize it.

And at Milton I am one of many, many people who have gone all out for something, grinded, and then not made it. In the college process, I was deferred twice and wait-listed at five schools. Talking with representatives they all told me, “Jake you were so close.”

And that is how it goes with big goals: you may make it, you may not, and you may be tantalizingly close. And, when that happens, when we get really close to an important goal but do not make it, what are we left with?

When I was a new driver, I had some trouble with the idea of aiming high when steering, getting my eyes up and looking further ahead. I would be rolling through my neighborhood and be checking out the squirrels, houses, trees, and maybe I would lean out my window and high five Jimmy from down the road. My dad would be like, “Jake no, you can’t do that. You can’t give Jimmy a high five when you are driving.” The point is I was so intently focused on what was going on directly around me, to my left and to my right, I was not focused on the road ahead and my destination.

Due to my dad and my driving instructor, Dave, I learned not to stare out the windows when in my car. I learned to look further ahead to see the conditions in the future. And in no time, I was driving better, saving me from many potential accidents. Except for that one telephone pole… again, sorry Mom and Dad.

When driving, we are told to be focused on what is ahead. But we are also told to operate this way in life. Life is not driving. In life being totally fixated on the future comes with problems. Like with driving, it’s really tiring to always be looking ahead and that’s why we can’t wait until we get there. And it’s easy to get in the mindset of I’ll be happy when… when I get there… when I get into that college…when I make that team… when I join that club… when I get that job…

This “I’ll be happy when…” mindset that totally focuses on the future up ahead, can really mess with you. You wind up tuning out everything except your destination. You don’t see Jimmy, and he needs a high five.

So what am I saying? Am I saying give up your goals? No. Today when you get your diploma, (not from me, evidently) keep your big, massive, wild, crazy goals. And I know this class is not planning to go six yards no they want the whole nine. This class is fierce, bold, passionate, kind, and raring to go out and make their impact on the world. So do it, find some big goals to steer towards. But don’t miss out on the things to your left and right –the things off the road that you might only glance at if you are too focused staring at your destination. Maybe it is a trustee that needs thanking. Maybe a mother who needs a hug. Maybe a teacher who does not know how much they have meant to you. Maybe a friend you want to keep in touch with. Maybe it is recognizing how special it is to be part of such a wonderfully diverse, vibrant, and engaged community that gets together to face the complexities of our nation.

If you do this, you might come off a long Community Service Day with the Taylor School cradling your sore shoulder. You have been bowling for five straight hours, and it is just catching up to you. You may look at Kyle, desperation in your eyes, and ask him. “Kyle for the last time, what station was best?” And he might just say “the bowling station.” Or more likely, “the bouncy house.” But either way, you know you are part of his smile and he is part of yours.

Thank you

Speech by Sophia Wilson Pelton '17

sophia-pelton-20170609_51Thank you Ms. Figueroa.

Senior year proved to be one that did not ask, but forced me to look both inward and outward in ways that I had never done before. I cannot attribute my experience only to the near-fatal college process. For this year’s socio political climate was one that left not only many of my peers, but the rest of the nation — the globe — in a spot very similar to mine.

Let me backtrack a little. I was born and raised in Salem, Oregon. I moved to Boston three weeks before my freshman year at Milton. Salem has an African-American population of 1.7%. The school I attended for K-8 has a black student population that fluctuates between a whopping 1 and 2 kids. All of this is to say that due to a combination of the environment in which I was raised and my own privilege and naiveté, being a minority was not only my norm, but it felt comfortable to me, so when I arrived at Milton, I saw only one path before me, which was more or less to follow the trajectory I was already on.

At 14-years-old, I lacked the self awareness to think deeply about the person I was and to ask myself who is the person I want to become. With little to no thought, I catapulted myself into a world where money is not an issue to most, where the majority of adults are there to support you, and where students can leave the high top tables in the Student Center sticky with barbecue sauce from the snack bar and not think twice about who has to clean up our mess. And for a while, I was able to remain blind to the privileges Milton afforded me, but a funny thing happened during my four years here, and I’m not sure if anyone can relate to this: I grew. As a minority, a lot of the “growing up” I’ve done over the past four years has to do with gaining a deeper understanding of what it means to be black, to be female, or to be both at the same time. I became more aware of the world outside of Milton, and, as much as we like to think of these 125 acres as a bubble, I became more aware of the implications of blindly treating them as such. While Milton is not an accurate representation of the world outside, it is a continuation of that world, meaning that our actions here do still hold a certain weight once we’re on the other side of Centre Street.

I started to think more and more about what it means to live an authentic life. This is where I ran into the terrible paradox of growing up at Milton: by senior year, we’re expected to have found our rhythm. We’ve established the people with whom we spend the bulk of our time and the spaces that which we occupy. However, we’ve matured so much during our four years here, that senior year also tends to be the time when a change feels most necessary. But going against our “norm” can be difficult and uncomfortable and scary. With college right around the corner, it is easy to convince ourselves that switching things up this late in the game would be a fruitless endeavor.  I think most people view their paths at Milton as somewhat linear: they leave this school a four-year-older version of the person who entered it. This narrative is one that I’ve grappled with over the past year, for if Milton’s motto is correct, if this is an institution that dares us to be true, then why after three years did I find myself feeling most confused? And worse, why did I feel as though I lacked the resources to find my truth and live my most authentic life?

Basically, I was in the midst of what I like to refer to as my quarter-life crisis, though was probably much more like your average coming of age. I did not feel that I was living a life true to the person I was, nor to the person I wanted to be, and I was not interested in waiting until college to do so. I am a big fan of cheesy quotes. This fall, I found by William James that felt incredibly apropos to the situation in which I found myself: “To change one’s life: 1. Start immediately. 2. Do it flamboyantly. 3. No exceptions.” And so, this is what I attempted to do. I began asking myself these two questions: What do I value? And how do I spend my time? As an adolescent, it takes a real, concerted effort to align the ways in which you spend your time with the things that you value. We go to school from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm, we spend hours pouring over homework, and we do sports, arts, and whatever other extracurriculars, and then we often do not feel autonomous over our little free time that remains, which is why it is so important to surround yourself with people who truly motivate you, respect you, and make you happy.

Though this task is far easier said than done. Because sometimes you don’t even realize that you want make a change — take a rise — until it’s too late. This year, my English teacher asked if, in our past classes, we had ever tried taking real, genuine risks in our writing. The class’s reply was nearly unanimous: “Teachers never told us to”, to which she replied, “They never told you to do it, but they also never told you not to do it.” In English, writing in new and inventive ways has not only made me a more thoughtful student but it has helped me become a more conscious individual. It has made me draw connections between not only texts, but our global community, and myself. Without my teacher’s suggestion, I probably wouldn’t have thought to try half of the things I did this year. I was on a path, and while I was never explicitly told, “This is the person you must be”, I remained on that prescribed path because no one was there to advise me to do otherwise, or maybe they were, and I wasn’t paying attention.

Because here’s the thing: there rarely are people to tell you to take a risk — to tell you to reevaluate the way you’ve been doing things — when you really need them. And when I say risks I don’t mean trying out for the school musical or having an ice cream bar just for the fun of it despite the fact that you are severely lactose intolerant. I recently read an essay by Joan Didion, entitled On Self Respect. In her essay, Didion concludes that real self respect means knowing the risks that you run with every decision that you make, and, if things don’t pan out the way that you wish, still being comfortable in your decision, so when I say “take a risk”, I mean having the courage and self-respect to make a change when you recognize something in your life that you don’t like.

We often hear that college is a time for growth and reinvention. Rarely do we hear that the fall of your senior year in high school is a time for the same. The way I look at it though, the opposite is true: being true to yourself is one of the most best ways you can prepare for life outside of Milton. Really, we owe it to ourselves to push the boundaries that we feel confined by, because doing so will make it easier to move through the world confidently and consciously. So before we leave, I want you to look around and notice where you’ve been, how it differs from where you are headed, and how it has shaped the way you experience the world — the way you move through the world. Because to be the most fulfilled version of ourselves, we must understand that there is no one time for growth and reinvention, rather we should constantly be thinking about who we are and who we want to be. Even if the answer is “I don’t know”, begin by questioning yourself: Do you feel comfortable in the spaces that you currently occupy? What qualities do you want to see in the people by whom you surround yourself? At your core, what do you most value? Let your answers inform your choices, because action expresses priority.

Thank you.

Speech by Tze Chun, Class of 1998

tze-chun-webAlright, let’s do this. Thank you so much to the Class of 2017 for having me here. Thank you to the trustees. And the teachers. Many of the teachers I see right now, I have such great memories of. And for the teachers who remember me and what I was like when I was here… I’m sorry.

This feels like I’m coming home. I was the valedictorian of my own graduating class of 1998. But, as you may know, at Milton, being valedictorian isn’t based on grades. It’s something the class votes on. So, I wasn’t the best student. Just the most popular. It’s been 19 years since the last time I stood up here. And for those of you in the graduating class who are also blessed with Asian genes, in 19 years you might look like this too.

I remember standing up here on my graduation day, in a very unfortunate 90s style sports jacket and a ponytail, and looking out at my classmates. I remember the joy and excitement at being able to speak to them about the next step in their lives. And I remember thinking, wow — I am totally unqualified for this job. I didn’t have all the answers then, and almost 20 years later, I still don’t. First off, I don’t feel that I’ve accomplished nearly enough to be your graduation speaker. And if you feel the same, you should definitely contact Todd Bland when this is all over. But, since I’m up here, I’ll try. One member of the Milton family to another.

The last thing I said in my graduation speech in ‘98 was this:

“In a few moments, one by one, we’ll take our diplomas, then we’ll file down that aisle, past our parents and teachers, and out into the world. It’s a step I’m willing to take, because I know it is time to do so. But I also know that when I take that diploma, I will be paying for it with a piece of my heart that can never be replaced.”

Right? So earnest! But, what I’ve come to learn is, this has held 100% true. There has never been a place that I’ve felt as at home, as welcome, as nurtured, as I did when I was here. I love this school. It was here that I found out what I really loved. Which is making art, and telling stories.

This is where I gained the confidence to even believe that I could do those things, like, for my life. It’s where I met my wife, Cara McKenney, with whom, I have two wonderful children and who’s out there in the audience right now. Just so you guys know, at Milton, Cara was a jock, and I was an artsy kid. When people ask Cara what I was like in high school, she remembers me as – quote – “the emo kid who was always painting and crying into his ponytail.” – end quote – So there’s nothing that love cannot overcome.

Since leaving Milton, as I’m sure all of you will experience, I’ve had good days and bad days… I’ve had good years, and bad years, but through it all, I’ve felt very very lucky to have lived a life where I get to do what I love. It started at Milton, and it continued after. And to me, that’s the greatest gift you can give yourself.

To do what you love, every day, for the rest of your life.

So, you may ask, how do you go about this? Well, I have a FOUR POINT PLAN. It’s a list, sorry. It’s the simplest way of organizing information. It’s like a critical essay, except, it takes no skill and nobody’s grading you.

So how do you go about doing what you love, every day, for the rest of your life?

1)      Just do it. I feel like maybe I’m not the first one to say these words. But the truth is, for the most part, it costs you nothing to do what you love. When I was at Milton, I spent my time outside of class painting, or making movies. My backpack was filled with paintbrushes, camera equipment, and stage blood. It was weird. But guess what, when you do what you love, things get weird.

Look. You wanna make music, or create an app, or dance? Just do it. I’m gonna trademark that. You’re growing up in a different age than I did. There’s never been more information at your fingertips, but with that also comes the tools to practice doing what you love. Paint, read, take photos, take selfies, don’t do that. If you’re into business, read about startups. If you’re a scientist, I know that equipment’s kind of expensive, so break into a lab and experiment after hours. Then, study law and represent yourself during your trial for breaking and entering. The most important thing is to practice what you love doing, every single day. People generally love doing what they’re good at. And that only happens by practicing. Also, if we’re talking about a generation gap, stop looking at your phones. Look at your iPads, the resolution is so much better.

2)      Surround yourself with people who help you do what you love, and help them do what they love. I’m gonna get real for a second. Which is, by the way, only something that people my age say to people your age before they ask you if you’re on drugs. Um… I grew up with a single mom. She’s out there in the audience right now. My sister and I were financial aid kids when we were at Milton. But there was one thing my mom never spared an expense for. And that was helping me pursue my interests. She’d buy me books, take me to art shows. Most weekends when I was at Milton, she drove my friends and I around to make movies. She rented me a camera. She rented me a gun. Sure, it was a prop gun. But, I’ve just always wanted to say to my mom: Thank you for getting me that gun. I really needed it.

Look. You may not be in this situation now, because Milton is a special place. But, the world out there is filled with people who want to tell you why you can’t do the things you’re interested in. People who tell you there’s too much competition. You’re not smart enough, not driven enough, or what you wanna do has already been done. Those people are only trying to justify why they can’t do the things they love. Don’t listen to those people. Especially Greg. He’s the worst. Only you know what you’re capable of.

3)      Don’t let rejection break you. This seems intuitive but it’s the easiest thing to forget. Rejections suck. And when you’re starting out, you’re gonna get a lot of them. And not to be a jerk, but, you probably deserve it. We all do. I don’t think I started out as the best writer or the best director. When I graduated from college, I made ten short films before getting noticed. That’s ten films that I begged my friends to work on. Ten films I went through the arduous process of writing, casting, shooting, editing and submitting to festivals. And not one of those ten films was accepted to a single film festival. Sometimes I’d come home, and the mailbox would have two or three rejections, this was back when rejections were like, mailed to you. They’d just be sitting one on top of the other like some kind of parfait of disappointment. But all that time I was learning. I was getting better. Most importantly, I didn’t stop. And my 11th short film was accepted into Sundance, opened up doors for me and started my career.

When you’re doing anything worth doing, it’s gonna be an uphill battle. But, it doesn’t matter how many rejections you get. It doesn’t matter how many people say no to you. All that matters is one person says yes. So don’t give up.

4)      So, this last thing might be the hardest. Embrace your contradictions. Each one of you is a unique human being, with your own interests that may not traditionally go together. Part of finding your place in the world, is exploring those contradictions. Confuse people. You might be a nerd who loves golf. Or an athlete that finds particle accelerators super sweet. It’s not your responsibility to put yourself in a box so they can understand you better. Embrace your contradictions. That combination of all those conflicting elements of who you are? That’s what makes you different from everyone else. And that’s your strength.

I’m looking at you guys right now, and I’m transported back to the last time I was up here. A lifetime ago. I’m so excited for you, about this next step in your lives, about the friendships, and the strengths you’ve developed here.

In two hours, this quad will be empty. So I just want you to savor this moment.

Look out into the audience. Look at your teachers, your parents, your grandparents, your siblings. Then look at each other. Know that everyone here is so so very proud of you. As you should be with yourself.

Milton’s motto is Dare to be True, and, as a teenager, that was just something that I’d see on plaques, or that adults would say, I didn’t know why. But I’ve come back to it, again and again. Dare to be True has meant a lot of things to me over the years. But there’s been one way I’ve interpreted it that has stayed with me. And if I can leave you with anything it’s this:

Dare to be True to yourself. Dare to be True to your instincts of who you are. Dare to be True to your contradictions and your strengths. Dare to be True to your dreams. Dare to be True to the pursuit of those dreams. It is the greatest gift you can ever give yourself.

And I know I speak for everyone here when I say…

We can’t wait to see what you do.

Class of 2017 Graduates

Daysha Afie Adotey, Bronx, NY
Virginia Demetra Alex, Cohasset, MA
Margaret Stone Ames, Dedham, MA
Nia Imani Atkins, North Attleboro, MA
Jacob Stephen Atwood, Milton, MA
Keisha Baffour-Addo, Suwanee, GA
Anne Gardner Bailey, Dover, MA
William Manchester Barrett, Dedham, MA
Harry Francis Thomas Barrett-Cotter, Milton, MA
Peter Holgate Barron, Amagansett, NY
Isabel Miriam Basow, Southborough, MA
Julian James Batt, Needham, MA
Edward Charles Beaudoin, Dedham, MA
Emily Eileen Bell, Dover, MA
Robert Kenneth Beniers III, Hingham, MA
Danielle Brianna Black, Middleboro, MA
Jack James Bliss, Chelmsford, MA
Mark Culver Bodner, Cohasset, MA
Oliver Cannon Boyce, Gloucester, MA
Thomas Joseph Brennan, Stony Point, NY
Katherine Kelly Burke, Boston, MA
Elliot Waterman Burnes, Boston, MA
Henry Watson Burnes, Boston, MA
Luke Doulos Cadigan, Milton, MA
Eshani Chakrabarti, Canton, MA
Chung Letitia Chan, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Ethan Avery Chan, Hong Kong
Noah Curran Cheng, Cambridge, MA
Karina Ying Cheung, Hong Kong
Hei Tung Claudia Chung, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Henry Whitfield Claudy, Brookline, MA
Dan Andrew Colombo, Roslindale, MA
Emma Marie Comrie, Salem, MA
Finley Audrey Congdon, Hingham, MA
Grace Julia Connor, Boston, MA
Jennifer Love Costa, Smithfield, RI
Daniel Aidan Cox, Millbrook, NY
Kiana Rae Cozier, Milford, MA
Kevin John Crabtree, Medfield, MA
Elizabeth Jane Czarniak, Halifax, MA
John Paul Daley, Kennebunk, ME
Casey Johanna DeLano, Quincy, MA
Anna Elizabeth Desan, Port Jefferson, NY
Peter Luca Cabot DiGiovanni, Milton, MA
Maria Helene DiMartinis, Norwell, MA
Marianna Elizabeth Dionne, Cambridge, MA
Ethan Alexander Domokos, New Brunswick, Canada
Peter Giles Duke, Oyster Bay, NY
James Foster Dunn, Milton, MA
Sophie Guerly Edouard, Brockton, MA
Cora Petzold Enterline, Boulder, CO
Michelle Erdenesanaa, Milton, MA
William Spencer Evett, Arlington, MA
Robosa Nicole Ezekiel, Lagos, Nigeria
Jennifer Lee Feeney, Milton, MA
Gabrielle Choi Fernandopulle, Milton, MA
Isaac Samuel Fossas, Dudley, MA
Katie Jin Friis, Arlington, MA
Abigail Ecklund Furdak, Wellesley, MA
Charles Wood Gagnon, Milton, MA
Drew Galls, Boston, MA
Nathaniel Christopher Goddu, Boston, MA
Jacquelyn Mira Golden, Chestnut Hill, MA
Nicholas Kiryn Govindan, Milton, MA
Sophia Ambrose Greenaway, Milton, MA
Anooshka Pushpa Gupta, Dublin, CA
Shaw Hagiwara, Tokyo, Japan
Benjamin Breed Handy, Providence, RI
Thomas Hannah, Seattle, WA
Wayne Nathaniel Harding, Brooklyn, NY
Aidan James Hartman, Canton, MA
Kaja Grace Hartwell, Hyde Park, MA
Zachary Chase Herman, Cohasset, MA
Lydia Bross Hill, Westwood, MA
Kathryn Rose Hoffman, Westborough, MA
Ashleigh Foley Hogan, Duxbury, MA
Maria Nicole Horbaczewski, Norwood, MA
Wesley James Hudson, Randolph, MA
Haley MacBean Hunt, Barrington, RI
Alexander Enzo Iansiti, Wellesley, MA
Allana Grace Iwanicki, Norwell, MA
Juliet Therese Jarrell, Wellesley, MA
Peter Wandell Jenkins, Barrington, RI
Harrison Jia, Dedham, MA
Emily Yi-hsiu Jiang, Norwell, MA
Andrew Pierce Milton Josephs, Kingston, Jamaica
Joshua Reid Katz, Dover, MA
Dongeun Kim, Seoul, South Korea
Jason Kong, Corona, CA
Ivan Kouzmine, Atlanta, GA
Shae Krishnaswamy, Tampa, FL
Agnieszka Jean Krotzer, Moultonborough, NH
Elena Austin Lachenauer, Weston, MA
Brie Anne Knight Lawson, Duxbury, MA
Julia Grace Lebovitz, Weston, MA
Joy Tin Yan Lee, Hong Kong
Chloë Fulbright LeStage, Jamaica Plain, MA
Dalton Joseph Letorney, Duxbury, MA
Joey Ka-Yu Leung, Hong Kong
Lê Nguyễn Mai Linh, Moscow, Russia
Clare Frances Lonergan, Cambridge, MA
William Matrone Mack, Bristol, RI
Matthew Lawrence Magann, Canton, MA
Tristan James Manuel, Beverly, MA
Owen Birdsall Martinson, Milton, MA
Caroline Andresen Massey, South Hamilton, MA
Charles Richard Mathews, Waban, MA
Christopher David Mathews, Waban, MA
Malcolm George McCann, Newton, MA
Barbara Taylor McDuffee, Lynnfield, MA
Annabel Sarah McLaughlin, Duxbury, MA
Dorothea Lillian McRae, Boston, MA
Solace Borkor Mensah-Narh, North Brunswick, NJ
Théophile Miailhe, Bordeaux, France
Sarah Katherine Miller-Bartley, South Hampton, NH
Ranim El Torky Mohamed, Alexandria, Egypt
Angel Luis Mojica Jr., Lynn, MA
Silas Woodcock Monahan, Cambridge, MA
Lawrence Stephen Mrowka, Duxbury, MA
Samuel Terrence Murray, Jamaica Plain, MA
Siena Mercedes Nagel-Thompson, Dorchester, MA
Walter Kihoon Nam, Chestnut Hill, MA
Jack Henry O’Brien, Milton, MA
Brett Thomas O’Connell, Hingham, MA
Sara Margaret O’Connor, Marshfield, MA
Stephen John O’Connor III, Marshfield, MA
Earvin Edomitutu Ofulue, Rivers, Nigeria
Margaret Elizabeth O’Hanlon, Milton, MA
Frederick Oliver Okito, Chicago, IL
Oladunni Danielle Temilola Oladipo, North Easton, MA
Samuel Brooks Calabresi Oldshue, Jamaica Plain, MA
Lauren Alexandra Oliver, Duxbury, MA
Olusemilore Temilola Oloko, Canton, MA
Nicholas Peter O’Toole, Franklin, MA
Lila Nevill Oursler, Cooperstown, NY
Te Shelia Palandjian, Belmont, MA
Ethan Burdette Pannell, Tiburon, CA
Min Kyu Park, Seoul, South Korea
Dylan Ellis Paul, Dover, MA
Alexa Luba Perlov, Newton, MA
Tyler John Piazza, Wellesley, MA
William Thomas Pincince, Wellesley, MA
Cheyenne Alyse Porcher, Oxford, MA
Nicholas Kuniholm Potter, Manchester, MA
Zhenfeng Qiu, Beijing, China
Luke Thomas Quintin, Raynham, MA
Vijay Charan Ramkissoon, Bronx, NY
Allan Robert Rappleyea, Millbrook, NY
Allison Louise Reed, Dover, MA
Caleb Thoyer Rhodes, Newton, MA
Catherine Rhodes Robertson, Wellesley, MA
Destiny Deliela Rosa, Brooklyn, NY
Christina George Sakellaris, Milton, MA
Gillian Thorne Sanders, Milton, MA
Samuel Francis Saunders, New Canaan, CT
Evan Scales, Boston, MA
Joseph Patrick Schuster, East Hampton, NY
John Rodrigues Sheehan, Weymouth, MA
Jing Zhi Shen, Beijing, China
Jay William Singh Sidhu, Orlando, FL
Michael Roger Silva, Kingston, MA
Marshall Milton Sloane II, Needham, MA
Maya Lee Slocum, Norwell, MA
Harrison Fitzgibbons Smith, Bronxville, NY
Madeline Tea Stavis, Cohasset, MA
Caroline Cecilia Wen-Hwei Strang, Wellesley, MA
Nathan Philip Strauss, Newton, MA
Jeanette Subkhanberdina, Almaty, Kazakhstan
Mateen Tabatabaei, Newton, MA
Matthew Patrick Tabor, Westford, MA
Hana Naomi Autor Tatsutani, Newton, MA
Elina Thadhani, Boston, MA
William Gerard Woodrow Torous, Tiburon, CA
Logan Thomas Troy, Milton, MA
Katherine Irene Vallot-Basker, New York, NY
Juliana Louise Viola, Milton, MA
Austin Jatin Vyas, Milton, MA
Chloë Rose Walker, Milton, MA
Ellen Lindsay Wei, East Lyme, CT
Henry George Westerman, Somerville, MA
Christopher Johnson Palmer Wilbur, Groton, CT
George Arthur Wilde, Brookline, MA
Sarah Blume Willwerth, Needham, MA
Sophia Rose Wilson Pelton, Boston, MA
Catherine Gatchalian Wise, Wayland, MA
Blair Fan Xu, Ontario, Canada
Haozhou Xu, Sydney, Australia
Selin Ege Yalcindag, Milton, MA
Lydia Isabelle Yang, Seoul, Korea
Olivia Zhong, Weston, MA

Awards

CUM LAUDE
Class I
Margaret Stone Ames
Nia Imani Atkins
Anne Gardner Bailey
Mark Culver Bodner
Elliot Waterman Burnes
Chung Letitia Chan
Noah Curran Cheng
Casey Johanna DeLano
Marianna Elizabeth Dionne
James Foster Dunn
Sophie Guerly Edouard
Michelle Erdenesanaa
Gabrielle Choi Fernandopulle
Katie Jin Friis
Drew Galls
Alexander Enzo Iansiti
Emily Yi-hsiu Jiang
Dongeun Kim
Jason Kong
Brie Anne Knight Lawson
William Matrone Mack
Samuel Terrence Murray
Samuel Brooks Calabresi Oldshue
Te Shelia Palandjian
Alexa Luba Perlov
Tyler John Piazza
Christina George Sakellaris
Jing Zhi Shen
Marshall Milton Sloane II
Maya Lee Slocum
*Elina Thadhani
Logan Thomas Troy
Juliana Louise Viola
Henry George Westerman
George Arthur Wilde
Sarah Blume Willwerth
Catherine Gatchalian Wise
Selin Ege Yalcindag

Class II
Rachel Elizabeth Handler
Patrick Jiacheng Huang

* elected to Cum Laude in 2016

THE HEAD OF SCHOOL AWARD
The Head of School Award is presented each year to honor and celebrate certain members of Class I for their demonstrated spirit of self-sacrifice, community concern, leadership, integrity, fairness, kindliness, and respect for others.

Virginia Demetra Alex
Edward Charles Beaudoin
Anooshka Pushpa Gupta
Wesley James Hudson
Lê Nguyễn Mai Linh
Juliana Louise Viola
Austin Jatin Vyas
George Arthur Wilde

THE JAMES S. WILLIS MEMORIAL AWARD
To the Headmonitors.

Olusemilore Temilola Oloko
Tyler John Piazza

WILLIAM BACON LOVERING AWARD
To a boy and a girl, chosen by their classmates, who have helped most by their sense of duty to perpetuate the memory of a gallant gentleman and officer.

Wesley James Hudson
Solace Borkor Mensah-Narh

THE LOUIS ANDREWS MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP AWARD
To a student who has best fulfilled his or her potential in the areas of intelligence, self-discipline, physical ability, concern for others and integrity.

Nia Imani Atkins

THE KOREAN WAR MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP AWARD
Created in 1956 in memory of Frederick Sprague Barbour ’46, Thomas Amory Hubbard ’47, George Cabot Lee, Jr ’47, and Sherrod Emerson Skinner, Jr ’47, who gave their lives for their country and the United Nations. Awarded to students from abroad to enable them to further their education at Milton Academy, and who enrich the Milton community through their participation.

Ranim El Torky Mohamed

THE FRANK D. MILLET SCHOLARSHIP AWARD
To a student who demonstrates moral integrity, supports classmates, and has established meaningful relationships with peers and faculty. The Millet scholar, by virtue of character and deeds, is an integral member of his or her class and shows great promise as a leader.

Keisha Baffour-Addo
Wesley James Hudson

THE LEO MAZA AWARD
Awarded to a student or students in Classes I – IV, who, in working within one of the culture or identity groups at the school, has made an outstanding contribution to the community by promoting the appreciation of that group throughout the rest of the school.

Gabrielle Choi Fernandopulle
Solace Borkor Mensah-Narh
Cheyenne Alyse Porcher

THE H. ADAMS CARTER PRIZE
Awarded to the student or students who, in their years at Milton, have shown a dedication to the pursuit of outdoor skills, demonstrated strong leadership, and reached high levels of personal achievement in one or more outdoor activities.

Malcolm George McCann
Silas Woodcock Monahan

THE A. HOWARD ABELL PRIZE
Established by Dr. and Mrs. Eric Oldberg for students deemed exceptionally proficient or talented in instrumental or vocal music or in composition.

Peter Giles Duke
Allana Grace Iwanicki
Allison Louise Reed

HARRISON OTIS APTHORP MUSIC PRIZE
Awarded in recognition of helpful activity in furthering in the school an interest and joy in music.

Wesley James Hudson
Dalton Joseph Letorney

THE GEORGE SLOAN OLDBERG MEMORIAL PRIZE
Awarded in memory of George Oldberg ’54, to members of the school who have been a unique influence in the field of music.

Anne Gardner Bailey
Edward Charles Beaudoin

THE SCIENCE PRIZE
Awarded to students who have demonstrated genuine enthusiasm, as well as outstanding scientific ability in physics, chemistry and biology.

Isabel Miriam Basow
Elliot Waterman Burnes
Henry Watson Burnes
Noah Curran Cheng
James Foster Dunn
Sophie Guerly Edouard
Gabrielle Choi Fernandopulle
Drew Galls
Caleb Thoyer Rhodes
Elina Thadhani
Logan Thomas Troy
Selin Ege Yalcindag

THE WALES PRIZE
Awarded in honor of Donald Wales who taught Class IV science for more than 36 years. It recognizes students in Class IV who have consistently demonstrated interest and excitement in science.

Alaina Isabel Cherry
Ethan Ecklund Furdak
Ethan Calvin Loop
Duncan Scot MacGillivray
Avery Rose Miller
Kathryn Anne Packard
Alexander Burling Rodriguez
Jeanna Yuyang Shaw

THE ROBERT SALTONSTALL MEDAL
For pre-eminence in physical efficiency and observance of the code of the true sportsman.

Michael Roger Silva

THE A. O. SMITH PRIZE
Awarded by the English Department to students who display unusual talent in non-fiction writing.

Henry Whitfield Claudy
William Matrone Mack
Te Shelia Palandjian
Alexa Luba Perlov

THE CRITICAL ESSAY PRIZE
Awarded by the English Department for the best essay about a work or works of literature.

Jing Zhi Shen
Amalya Wilson

THE MARKHAM AND PIERPONT STACKPOLE PRIZE
Awarded in honor of two English teachers, father and son, to authors of unusual talent in creative writing.

Chung Letitia Chan
Lydia Bross Hill

THE DOROTHY J. SULLIVAN AWARD
To a Class I student who has demonstrated an outstanding attitude and commitment to athletics at Milton. She models exceptional sportsmanship, leadership and dedication, and she serves as an inspiration and role model to her teammates and others.

Maria Helene DiMartinis

THE DONALD CAMERON DUNCAN PRIZE FOR MATHEMATICS
Awarded to students in Class I who have achieved excellence in the study of mathematics while demonstrating the kind of love of the subject and joy in promoting its understanding which will be the lasting legacy of Donald Duncan’s extraordinary contributions to the teaching of mathematics at Milton.

Sophie Guerly Edouard
Dalton Joseph Letorney
Tyler John Piazza
Elina Thadhani
Logan Thomas Troy
Juliana Louise Viola
Austin Jatin Vyas

THE PERFORMING ARTS AWARD
Presented by the Performing Arts Department for outstanding contributions in production work, acting, speech, audiovisuals, and dance throughout his or her Milton career.

Eshani Chakrabarti
Peter Giles Duke
William Spencer Evett
Nicholas Kiryn Govindan
Solace Borkor Mensah-Narh
Cheyenne Alyse Porcher
Allison Louise Reed
Destiny Deliela Rosa
Marshall Milton Sloane II
Maya Lee Slocum
Chloë Rose Walker
Christopher Johnson Palmer Wilbur
Olivia Zhong

THE RICHARD PRICE ’50 PRIZE IN TECHNICAL THEATER
Awarded for unusual contributions of time, energy and ideas in theatre production and in technical assistance throughout a student’s career.

Finley Audrey Congdon
Austin Jatin Vyas
Lydia Isabelle Yang

THE KIKI RICE-GRAY PRIZE
Awarded for outstanding contributions to Milton Performing Arts throughout his or her career in both performance and production.

Henry Whitfield Claudy
Joy Tin Yan Lee

THE PRISCILLA BAILEY AWARD
To a student in her Class I year, recognizing exceptional athletic skill and admirable contributions to her team. This talented athlete demonstrates a strong work ethic and conducts herself with a spirit of teamwork and good sportsmanship.

Jennifer Love Costa

THE HENRY WARDER CAREY PRIZE
To members of the First Class, who, in Public Speaking and Oral Interpretation, have shown consistent effort, thoroughness of preparation, and concern for others.

Eshani Chakrabarti
Joy Tin Yan Lee
Hana Naomi Autor Tatsutani

THE ROBERT L. DALEY PRIZE
Created by his students of 1984 in his memory and honor, this prize in Classics is awarded to the student from Latin 4 or beyond who best exemplifies Mr. Daley’s love of languages.

Juliet Therese Jarrell

THE RICHARD LAWRENCE DERBY MEMORIAL AWARD
To members of the Second Class, outstanding in Mathematics, Astronomy, or Physics.

Alexandra Galls
Patrick Jiacheng Huang
Max Hui
Dong Ju Kim
Warwick Peter Alexander Marangos
Nihal Raman
Andrew Minwoo Song
Romain Jacques Higham Speciel
Matthew Joseph Tyler
Jessica Xinchun Wang
Yue Yang

THE ALFRED ELLIOTT MEMORIAL TROPHY
For self-sacrifice and devotion to the best interests of his teams, regardless of skill.

Lawrence Stephen Mrowka

THE GORHAM PALFREY FAUCON PRIZE
Established in 1911 and awarded to Class I students who, in their study of history and social sciences, have demonstrated interest, outstanding achievement, respect for others, and a deep curiosity about the human experience.

Emily Yi-hsiu Jiang
Jing Zhi Shen
Marshall Milton Sloane II

THE BENJAMIN FOSDICK HARDING LATIN PRIZES
Awarded on the basis of a separate test at each prize level.

Level 5: Rachel Elizabeth Handler
Level 4: Mary Grace Vainisi
Level 3: Evita Thadhani

THE MODERN LANGUAGES PRIZES
Awarded to those students who, in the opinion of the Department, most exhibit the qualities of academic excellence, enthusiastic participation, and support of fellow students, both in and out of class.

Margaret Stone Ames
Sophie Guerly Edouard
Michelle Erdenesanaa
Emily Yi-hsiu Jiang
Lê Nguyễn Mai Linh
William Matrone Mack
Nicholas Peter O’Toole
Nathan Philip Strauss

THE MILTON ACADEMY ART PRIZES
Awarded for imagination and technical excellence in his or her art and for an independent and creative spirit of endeavor.

Emma Marie Comrie
Joy Tin Yan Lee
Joey Ka-Yu Leung
Caroline Andresen Massey
Dorothea Lillian McRae
Sarah Katherine Miller-Bartley
Te Shelia Palandjian
Evan Scales
Chloë Rose Walker

Graduation Speakers

tze-chun-20170609_53
Tze Chun ’98
Writer/Director in Film and Television


todd-bland-web
Todd Bland
Head of School


jacob-atwood-20170609_49
Jacob Atwood ’17


sophia-wilson-pelton-web
Sophia Wilson Pelton ’17