On June 8, Viewpoint celebrated the graduation of the 134 students in the Class of 2019. Family, friends, faculty, and students gathered on Ring Family Field for an elegant commencement ceremony, which included performances by the Upper School Chorus and the Upper School String Quartet.
Head of School Mark McKee welcomed the students and their families and thanked the faculty and staff for supporting their more than 585,600 minutes of Upper School. He also invited the students to review their own personal “highlight reel” of their time at Viewpoint for those perfect moments of connection. He concluded his remarks with the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson:
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of the intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the beauty in others; to leave the world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know that one life has breathed easier because you lived here. This is to have succeeded.”
Salutatorian and musician Samuel Kritzer, who is off to Stanford in the fall, brought both laughter and tears with stories of his personal and shared journey at Viewpoint. On a more scholarly note, Valedictorian and soon-to-be Classics major at Princeton,Katie Hameetman, compared the story of two Roman centurions in Julius Caesar’sGallic Warswith that of the members of the Class of 2019. Although Titus Pullo and Lucius Vorenus, soldiers in 49 BCE, were highly competive, they were also comrades-in-arms and could count upon one another when needed – so too the members of the senior class.
This year’s Commencement Speaker, tech entrepreneurDirk Gates, parent ofAdin ’19, Aren ’08, Evan ’06, and Iayn ’18,encouraged the students to have fun, which is easy, and to find joy, which is something deeper. For Dirk, who has served in myriad roles on Viewpoint’s Board of Trustees over the last 21 years, joy comes from his family and from service to others. He recounted the evolution of the School from a small number of buildings and trailers on seven acres of land to the 45-acre campus our students enjoy today. Through his leadership and his generosity, Dirk was integral to the development of the School, and he looks forward to the growth he sees ahead.
We congratulate the Class of 2019 and wish them every success in the exciting years to come!