St. Johns Celebrates the Class of 2021

In a moving ceremony Saturday night, St. Johns was honored to celebrate the graduation of the 62 members of the Class of 2021. In a refreshingly "normal" commencement ceremony, final awards were bestowed, honors given, and the seniors graduated to become the latest alumni of St. Johns Country Day School. 

"As I reflect on this past school year, we can talk about the many obstacles, misfortunes, and traditions not kept due to COVID, but instead I will focus on what this past year has given to us all," said Head of School Valorie Baker, in her opening remarks. "What I'm referring to is grit." And certainly the Class of 2021, and the rest of the student body during this past year, has shown a lot of grit and determination. That will serve them well in the future, and "now is a skill that will serve them well as they move past the doors of high school," said Baker. 

After the awards presentations, Seniors Gaby Loustau and Ellie Rosenau delivered some remarks. In an heartfelt talk, Loustau reflected in a poem on what each of her classmates had taught her over their years together. From hard work and dedication to how to laugh at herself, Loustau called each of her fellow seniors out by name with one of their offerings to the demographic of their class. 

"These incredible, studious, and generous people that sit here with me today are people that have a permanent place in my heart," Loustau summed, punctuated with both laughter and tears. "As we take our next steps out into the world as independent humans, we will be confronted with new experiences, new interests, and new challenges. We will work hard and we will be courageous and humble in our endeavors, as St. Johns has taught us. But I know if things get tough we will always be there for each other no matter how many miles apart. These past four years have been full of laughs and tears," she said through tears of her own, "they've been full of success and failures. They have been the most meaningful and memorable years, and I am so fortunate to have experienced them alongside each of you." 

A tough act to follow, Rosenau did so with aplomb, invoking the Senior Presentation talk given by senior-elected speaker Mr. Wes Cox.

Swag, she said, is "less about what you look like and more about what you’re made of. It's not wearing the latest Jordans, it's showing compassion to someone in need. It's how you compose yourself, what you do to make a positive difference in this world, and how you handle the inevitable negativity."

Referring to Mr. Cox’s Senior Presentation acronym, she spelled out swag as: 

S Stay true to yourself
W Wake up and make the most of today
A Always remember where you came from
G Go after the thing that scares you the most. 

After talking through each of the letters, Rosenau zeroed in on going after the things that scare us by quoting former President Barack Obama. “Fear, uncertainty, and discomfort are your compasses toward growth," Obama said. "If you run, you stand a chance of losing. But, if you don’t run you’ve already lost.” So, said Rosenau, "ask yourself, is this challenging? Yes, then do it. Am I afraid of failing? Yes, then do it. Do I feel unsure of myself? Yes, still do it. Our minds so often tell us that we’re not good enough, not equipped enough, not strong enough, not pretty enough, not 'fill in the blank' enough. That is just not true. These doubts and fears and insecurities will creep in, but it’s when we no longer let them have so much power that we can conquer even the things that make us afraid."

"While our experience was nothing like High School Musical, these movies provide a sense of camaraderie and love that we do share," she summed. "We may not hold hands and sing 'we’re all in this together,' but remember we really are."

After tremendous applause for these inspiring talks, diplomas were presented. Reading each graduate’s accomplishments and the college or university each has chosen to attend, Mrs. Fisher and Vice President of the Board of Trustees Mr. Richard Wilson bestowed the diplomas.

Congratulations to these 62 new St. Johns alumni, and best of luck on all of your future endeavors!

Class of 2021 Graduation Awards:

English Award: Allison Bright Korahais

The Carol A. Hart Math Award: Ethan Anderson Albright

Science Award: Anna Simmons Wulbern

Art Award: Natalie Rae Higingbotham

The Mary Virginia Fisher French Award: Allison Bright Korahais

Spanish Award: Ethan Anderson Albright

The Myrtle O’Shea Latin Award: Cade Robert Zehner

Cynthia C. Landry History Award: Julia Reese Nichols

Drama Award For Theatrical Performance: Gabrielle Martha Loustau

Drama Award For Technical Theatre: Jason Richard Thomas Jr

Dance Award: Julia Grace Schildberg

Music Instrumental Award: Alexander Kingdon Dimmick

Music Vocal Award: Alexa Rose Verboort

Computer Science Award: Jonathan Eugene Kats

Captain Borries Cup Award: Connor Thomas Moore

Linda C. Guswiler Athletic Award: Madeline Laura Moody

Leadership Awards:

Maggie Elizabeth Kent

Julia Marie Andrawis

Avery Paige Baskin

Julia Grace Schildberg

Service Awards:

Jonathan Eugene Kats

Amelia Jane Dyer

Alexander Kingdon Dimmick

Ellie Camille Rosenau

Fred Marion Cone IV

Jason Richard Thomas, Jr

Valedictorian Award: Alexis Sophie Drumm

Edwin Paul Heinrich Award: Ellie Camille Rosenau

Dora Helen Skypek Award: Jonathan Eugene Kats

Stephen F. Russey Best All-Around Young Man: Ethan Anderson Albright

Stephen F.  Best All-Around Young Woman: Maggie Elizabeth Kent

Roddey R. Fisher Award: Ellie Camille Rosenau

 

Members of the Class of 2021 Include:

  Alexis Michelle Agramonte Allison Bright Korahais
  Ethan Anderson Albright Abbey Rebecca Lantinberg
  Paul Brandon Allen Natalie Grace Lassiter
  Julia Marie Andrawis John Bernard Linge III
  Yashas Aprameya Gabrielle Martha Loustau
  Maxwell David Arnold Hannah Agnes Marshall
  Avery Paige Baskin Spencer Charles Martin
  Gary Frank Bradley III Walker Bay Mathews
  Landon Jeffery Boone Brafford   Max Nicklaus Monroe
  Charles Tilson Branch Madeline Laura Moody
  Kaley Marie Burnside Connor Thomas Moore
  Fred Marion Cone IV Julia Reese Nichols
  Stephanie Grace Constantino John Michael Nowicki
  Chloe Renee Crews James Douglas Oman
  Paige Riley Crews Alexa Marie Radford
  Chloe Adair Davis Brooke Alexis Remolde
  Mason Timothy Davis Isabella Grace Richardson
  Alexander Kingdon Dimmick Luke Daniel Robinson
  Alexis Sophie Drumm Ellie Camille Rosenau
  Amelia Jane Dyer Gavin Keys Russell
  Brooke Aidan Ferris Mia Morgan Sadler
  Mykel Javier Frazier Julia Grace Schildberg
  Emma Jane Harward Luke Christopher Shannahan
  Natalie Rae Higingbotham Jay'd Alan Micha St. John
  Desiree Holmberg Jason Richard Thomas, Jr
  Bianca Chiara Horen Alexa Rose Verboort
  Julia Hannah Jones Vincent Lenorris Williams Jr
  Haley Ann Juskowski James Richard Loram Wilson
  Jacob Douglas Kailes Natalie Zoe Wilson
  Jonathan Eugene Kats Anna Simmons Wulbern
  Maggie Elizabeth Kent Cade Robert Zehner