On Friday, April 21, St. Johns Country Day School inducted select members of the Junior and Senior classes into the prestigious Cum Laude Society. The Cum Laude Society is based on Phi Beta Kappa, the collegiate honors society, and is dedicated to honoring scholastic achievement in secondary schools.
Current members of the St. Johns Cum Laude Society chapter include Libby Coen, April D'Innocenzi, Sydney Monroe, Patricia Montgomery, Molly Urnek, Megan Wolf, and faculty members Harrison Sepulveda (Chapter Secretary), Cary Benefield, Mary Helen Cauthen, Leslie DeStefano, and Mary Virginia Fisher.
After an invocation by Director of Curriculum Leslie DeStefano, Mr. Sepulveda introduced the morning's guest speaker, Nancy Hogshead-Makar. Hogshead-Makar, parent of three St. Johns Spartans, is a human rights lawyer and Olympic gold medalist swimmer who has defended the rights of women and girls on a national scale.
"The most important thing that you are going to get out of your academic careers is not your GPA," said Hogshead-Makar. Just like in her swimming career, she said, where the most important thing she got was who she became as a result of working so hard and going for it.
"The Cum Laude Society honors the academic crème de la crème of our St. Johns juniors and seniors," said Harrison Sepulveda, Chapter Secretary. "It is one of the most significant laurels we offer each year, and the students whom we distinguish aren't just good students -- they're good people."
New members inducted on Friday include juniors Bishoy Abdelmalik, Michael Beltz, Zachary Buce, Abigail Chalfant, and Matthew Korahais, seniors Lisette Coll-Román, Shelby Olney, Hannah Reese, Isabell Spigel, and Doris Yang, and one faculty member, Kristin Jackson.
Congratulations, Cum Laude inductees!
Senior Patricia Montgomery, Chapter President, delivers opening remarks.
Nancy Hogshead-Makar, Olympic medalist, womens' advocate, and parent of three Spartans.
New Inductees with existing members of the St. Johns Country Day School chapter of the Cum Laude Society.