CLARK, NJ – A graduation ceremony for the Carl. H. Kumpf Middle School was held on June 20 in the Arthur L. Johnson High School gymnasium. Graduates entered the gym while the Kumpf band played Pomp and Circumstance.
Salutatorian Hunter Fabrizzio welcomed the crowd and his classmates. He thanked his family, the staff and teachers of the school and his classmates for sharing the journey. He reminisced momentarily about the first day of Kumpf and then thanked his class for sharing the ride they have been on together. “It’s been three really long years, 539 days at Kumpf,” said Fabrizzio smiling, “One more day and it is all over.” He closed wishing each of his fellow students well as they move on to bigger and better things.
Principal Jennifer Feeley spoke to the 179 students in the graduating class. In her address she talked about the lessons students will learn in high school. She told students to listen carefully because many of the best lessons will come through interactions with others and not in the classroom.
Feeley closed her address sharing with students, as they go forward in life, they might want to consider being best for the world instead of best in the world. “I challenge you instead of being best in the world, be best for the world, by being best for the world you will constantly be challenged to independently develop your own uniqueness and only you will be able to judge your success in your life,” said Feeley.
Superintendent Ed Grande shared a few words with the graduating class reminding them that as they left elementary school and entered middle school, there was more responsibility. He assured the students that the same would be true of their transition to high school. “Please know that you are leaving Kumpf well equipped for this challenge,” said Grande.
The event continued with three special awards. The award for perfect attendance was given to Angela Lin. Lin was the only graduate with no absences on record during the entire three years of middle school. Kumpf's Assistant Principal, Amanda Davidson distributed two additional awards to students that demonstrated skills, talents and behaviors recognized as being outstanding. The award for Citizenship was given to Elizabeth Chin and the Faculty Award went to Liana Moricz.
Diplomas were presented by Board of Education President Jill Curran and Vice President Steve Donkersloot. The roll call of graduates was shared by Caroline Morgan and Adam Zamlynny.
Valedictorian Angela Lin closed the evening’s events with a uplifting message to her classmates about enjoying the journey and not just the destination along their path in life. Lin compared it to not getting credit for providing just the answer to a Math problem, and instead having to show all the steps. “You don’t always have to have the right answer in the destinations of life but nothing matters more that the journey,” said Lin.
The evening closed with a congratulatory announcement from Feeley before the graduates exited to the Kumpf band playing March Royale.