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Josie DeRonja '19, Senior Commencement Speaker

Elected by her class as the 2019 Senior Commencement Speaker, Josie DeRonja '19 delivered the following address at Saint Mary's Commencement Exercises on May 19, 2019.

Good morning everyone. I want to start by saying thank you to my class for giving me the opportunity to be your commencement speaker. The way that each of you have supported me through the past few years means the world to me, and I hope this speech will demonstrate my gratitude for you and my love for our class. I also want to say thank you to the faculty, staff, underclasswomen, girls who previously graduated, and families that have supported us through our time at Saint Mary's. We would not have made it to today without your guidance and love.

Let me begin with a short story about my skills as a weather forecaster. Anyone who has spent any time with me right before an impending weather event like a snow storm or hurricane knows that I am always on top of the latest weather report and predictions. I am no meteorologist, but my one claim to fame could be that I predicted the hurricane that canceled fall formal three months in advance.

Read more about Class of 2019: we are an eclectic bunch
Paige Stevenson '19, Valedictorian

Paige Stevenson, valedictorian for the Class of 2019, delivered the following remarks during the Saint Mary's School Commencement Exercises on May 19, 2019:

Good morning, everyone. I cannot express how humbled I am to have the opportunity to address all of you, and I would not be here if it were not for all of Saint Mary's faculty, staff, administration, my family, my friends, and everyone assembled here today. It's you , the teachers and groundskeepers and behind-the-scenes magicians, who are the heart and soul of Saint Mary's. I think Aldert the Raven on Smedes behind me will forgive me for saying that the pretty campus is nice and all, but it's really the people who define the gifts of Saint Mary's. Finally, Class of 2019, please take a moment to glance at the young women seated to your left and to your right. Each of you were essential in our collective success that propelled us here, whether it was because you offered help in a class or left some much-needed snacks on the ATP desk one day. To all of you, thank you, 177 times over.

Read more about You've got this: resilience and perseverance
Corina Argiry '20, Isabel McGowan '20, and Claire Smith '20

Early in April 2019, three Saint Mary's students traveled to Princeton, New Jersey to participate in #LEADLIKEAGIRL an annual conference "for risk-takers and changemakers." Corina Argiry '20, Isabel McGowan '20, and Claire Smith '20. joined other students and educators from around the country to share their girl-wisdom, learn from one another, and hear from inspirational women leaders.

The Saint Mary's students gave a presentation titled "Developing Your Pitching Toolkit" designed to teach other girls how to effectively pitch. They defined pitching as "a selling technique that effectively displays and markets your business/ideas.

Here's what Corina, Isabel, and Claire had to say about the experience.

Read more about #LEADINGLIKEAGIRL: "An amazing experience"
Rim Metina-Belknap '19

We are so excited to welcome you to the Spring 2019 Orchesis Dance Theatre Concert. This concert, performed by 18 Orchesis members, is a special one and we hope it will spark joy in the community.

We would like to recognize five very important people who have been so important to Orchesis this year. The first three are our Orchesis seniors, Lilly Beth Glenn, Emma Rose McCune, and Rim Metina-Belknap. We are proud of all their accomplishments during their four years in Orchesis; and we are sad to see them leave us in May!

Read more about From Orchesis Dance Theatre President
Josie DeRonja '19 and Janie Jackson '19

Over spring break this year we were part of a group of eight Saint Mary's girls who went to Addis Ababa Ethiopia along with Ms. Chernin, Dr. Holstein, and Dean Healy. It was a life-changing experience and a trip that we will never forget. We made new friends, tried new foods, and were exposed to a culture different from our own.

When we first got off the plane and stepped into Ethiopia we were a little nervous. We had never been anywhere like Ethiopia before and did not know what to expect. When we saw the kind, smiling faces of our tour guides, Bini and Dougie, our worries faded. Bini and Dougie quickly made an effort to learn all of our names, and soon enough we were all joking and laughing with each other. They really encouraged us to immerse ourselves in the culture by trying new foods and trying to learn the language they spoke, Amharic.

Read more about A trip to Ethiopia: new perspectives, new inspiration