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In the Canyon and Surrounded by Family, Friends, and Faculty, the Sun Shone Bright on 115 Graduates Who Were Feeling '22 and World-Ready at Viewpoint School’s Commencement Ceremony

On, Saturday, June 11, Viewpoint celebrated the graduation of the 115 members of the Class of 2022. Family, friends, faculty, and students gathered on Ring Family Field for a joyful commencement ceremony, which included performances by the Upper School Concert Choir, Upper School Wind Ensemble, and the Upper School String Quartet.

Head of School Mark McKee welcomed the students and their families and thanked the faculty and staff, “who embody a love of learning and dedication to our students,” for all of their hard work during the challenges of the last few years. He then invited the seniors, who he praised for the gratitude they expressed throughout the year for every opportunity to connect and support one another, and who personify exceptional readiness for extraordinary futures, “to make a memory and take your moment.”

In his role of Salutatorian, Benjamin Meppen, who is off to New York University to study Film in the fall, shared his “17-year-old wisdom” with eloquence and humor and directed his remarks to his fellow classmates: 

“To Viewpoint’s graduating class of 2022, may our energy and determination be our greatest blessing. Let us not be satisfied with mediocre and constantly strive for more. May we take on our personal and professional endeavors with the same gusto and grit that we applied to them during our time in high school. May we take on our daily challenges big and small with an open mind and heart. And lastly and most importantly, may we go forth today and take on the world as conscientious, righteous adults who look to make the world a better place with our merits and maybe even a touch of humor.”

This year’s Commencement Speaker, Seth Casden ’91, Viewpoint alumnus, tech entrepreneur, CEO of Hologenix, and godfather of Valentino Devoto ’22also referenced the difficulties of the last few years and the importance of resilience. He said that “life will bring challenges, and we learn from the things that challenge us… Circumstances are facts that we can’t change, but how we react to them is a skill that we can develop.” He encouraged the students to “take ownership for your happiness and do not give it away freely, and hold it precious and dear.”

The theme of rethinking our relationship to life’s challenges continued with remarks by Valedictorian Clare Williams. The soon-to-be Global Health major at Duke University used the metaphor of evolution, and its necessary mutations to survive and thrive through adversity, as a way to encourage her classmates to accept that “errors are what allow us to be here today in a continuous and dynamic pattern of growth.” She continued, “Collectively, our mistakes enable us to become stronger, resilient, and more knowledgeable by learning from perceived unfavorable experiences…We will never be able to predict the uncertainties of our future. But, it is how we evolve within this uncertainty that allows us to emerge more resilient than before.”

While the themes of the remarks were a bit heavy, befitting this moment in time, the hearts of all in attendance were light. Everyone was thrilled to celebrate this wonderful group of young people together in the sunshine. We congratulate the Class of 2022 and wish them every success in the exciting years to come!

Click here to watch the Graduation ceremony. 


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