Valedictorian Speakers Make Milton Proud
by Rebecca Chernick on Friday, June 8th, 2012This morning, best friends and prom dates Martin Page and Cydney Grannan delivered the Valedictorian addresses and represented the Class of 2012 at their Graduation from Milton Academy.
The Valedictory addresses are important to both the graduating class and the community as a whole. At Milton, the position of Valedictorian is peer-elected, rather than based on grades. Candidates are able to nominate themselves if they would like to run. Separate elections take place for boys and girls, and this year, 6 boys and 10 girls ran.
Each candidate presented a two-minute speech to the class, and then the class voted on who they wanted to represent the class at graduation. “I made fun of myself a lot in [my speech]” Martin said.
Class I Dean Mr. Archer, who oversaw the election process, shared that “in the end, it’s less about who actually gives the speech. What excited me was how many people were interested in running” because it showed that many people “felt connected enough to the class” and wanted to reflect on their experiences at Milton.
Mr. Archer said that he is excited to hear the Valedictorian addresses because both students have an interest in public speaking, and he knew they would do a good job.
Class I Dean Ms. Lillis shared, “In many other schools, the graduation speakers are decided merely numerically [by] GPA. Milton emphasizes that Graduation is about the class, allowing them to elect a speaker they want to hear from on their last day as Milton students. I think this is a wonderful tradition and shows that being a Milton student is about something more than academic excellence.”
In the week before graduation, Martin said, “I’m excited to be able to reflect on Milton during such an important moment for me, the school, and my class. I love Milton, and am incredibly grateful for all it has given me. I’m honored to be speaking at graduation.”
When asked about possible topic ideas for his speech, he said, “I’m not going to give away much, but I will say I’m going to reflect on both the academic and non-academic experiences at Milton, what the Milton experience was for me and my class, and what it gave to us.”
The seniors are not the only ones who enjoy the Valedictorian speeches. Claire Russell (III) said, “I think it’s a great representation of the class.” She added that, although she did not really know the students delivering the Valedictorian addresses during her freshman year, the speeches they gave were enjoyable.
Ali Edwards (II) agreed with Claire, stating that although the Valedictorian addresses were probably more relevant to the graduating class, others can benefit from what they have to say because “[the speakers] are seniors, and they have had a full experience at Milton.”
Everyone on campus seems to be excited about this year’s speaker. Ms. Lillis said, “Martin Page is my advisee, and I am really looking forward to hearing what he has to share with us. Martin is witty and funny, and he has depth. He and Cydney are wonderful representatives of the Class of 2012.”
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