Class of 2017, I would like to start by saying how humbled I am to be up here speaking on behalf of the senior class.

Seventeen years ago, my dad passed away from melanoma skin cancer, leaving my mom to take care of three young kids; my brothers were four and six, and I was about to turn two. During this time, we were surrounded by many family members and friends, but a certain group of people stood out the most. This group hailed from Saint Mary's – they were my mom's friends from her time as a student here and they were there for my family through it all. They have watched me grow up and these women continue to be a huge part of my life to this day.

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Rev. Ann Bonner-Stewart, Chaplain

Saint Mary's School chaplain, Rev. Ann Bonner-Stewart, delivered the following homily at the 2017 Reunion Chapel on May 13, 2017, the day after the school celebrated its 175th birthday. In her words...

Wow - 175! According to the fount of all knowledge, Wikipedia, which we all know is never wrong, Saint Mary's shares our founding year, our birth year with many august institutions and things, including the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, the Citadel in south Carolina, and both the Vienna and the New York Philharmonic orchestras. And, of course, who could forget the first pilsner beer, first brewed on October 5, 11842 in what is now the Czech Republic. Happy 175 to all.

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Jane Brown '17

On April 20, SGA President Jane Brown '17 gave her final SGA report to Saint Mary's Board of Trustees. Here's what she had to say:

Welcome to springtime at Saint Mary's! In the air, you may have felt the electricity of transition, heard the hum of busy students, and seen a campus at the final peak of the 2016-2017 school year. New leader elections and inductions, exams, dance and music concerts, a spring sports season at full rev – the are just a few components of the current equation on campus. You may be wondering what the glue is that holds everything together and I will say that it is the frequent food treats (thanks PA!), exciting traditions to look forward to, and the wonderful people (friends, over the moon supportive teachers and advisors, and smiling people campus wide!).

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Kathryn Finkelstein '18

All my life my parents have expressed the importance of helping others and bettering our community. From a young age, my parents encouraged me to engage and participate in many of our local community service projects. Their guidance has helped me find my passion for helping others. I've experienced firsthand how amazing it feels to help others who need it and how I, even from a young age, can make a difference in my community. That feeling is unforgettable and priceless. For the past six years, I have been a part of an organization called National Charity League, also known as NCL. The mission of the NCL is to foster mother-daughter relationships in a philanthropic organization committed to community service, leadership development and cultural experiences. Through this organization, I have experienced the instantaneous gratification that comes from helping others. NCL partners with many local organizations such as The Alliance Medical Ministry, The Food Bank of N.C., The Green Chair Project, and The Salvation Army to help supply volunteers for the programs. Two of my favorite organizations to volunteer with are the Helen Wright Center and Loaves and Fishes.

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Zoe Haynes '17

I am so happy to welcome you to the 2017 Spring Orchesis Concert in Pittman Auditorium. This concert is sure to be an exciting, one-of-a-kind program that we know you will enjoy.

This concert includes performances by 18 Orchesis Dance Theatre dancers. I would like to give special recognition to J'Lah Johnson '20, Ashton Vermillion '17, Ashley White '20, and Fran Williams '20, as this is their first Orchesis spring concert. We are happy to have them as part of our company this year. They all bring their own unique style which enriches and diversifies our group, our choreography, and our performances.

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