SUMMIT, NJ - In addition to their own feeling of self-accomplishment, the plaudits and congratulatory wishes bestowed on them by their families, friends, teachers and administrators, and the support they received from the community via myriad scholarship opportunities, the Summit High School Class of 2018 -- a group that has achieved much in the classroom, when taking the stage, and on the playing field -- got a pristine, first-day-of-summer evening in which to be feted.
The 304-strong group of seniors were hailed as being a high achieving class, individually and collectively ready, willing, and able to tackle the challenges that lief ahead in the 21st century.
After Class Vice President Dylan Ingerman led everyone in reciting "The Pledge of Allegiance," Senior Choir members performed "The Star Spangled Banner" and Student Council President Thomas Quinn welcomed and thanked those in attendance, each of whom -- in ways big and small -- have played a role in the students' successful journeys.
Class Treasurer Hamail Iqbal told the crowd that the class will plant a tree on campus in honor of late Summit Police Department Detective Matthew Tarentino who, up to the time of his passing, was a familiar presence on the Kent Place Boulevard campus.
Sydney Benevento, Class Secretary, noted the many scholarship awards presented (noted below) and thanked the community for its support.
The 'Voice of the Class', Michael Greenstein, said in his remarks that he was on stage not as a singular voice, but representing a "chorus" created through the collective voice of the senior class. The Duke-bound Greenstein detailed an academic and social sojourn that began with "sitting in the back" of the student section at football games and evolving into a group of young women and men who found their voices and used them to put their stamp on Summit High School.
School Principal Stacy Grimaldi, Superintendent of Schools June Chang, and Board of Education President Deb McCann offered their final 'official' counsel to the Class of 2018, Kindness, compassion, joy, courage and curiosity were themes in their words, as evidenced by this excerpt from Chang:
"You should all be proud of what you have done, and excited about the next chapter in your life. Let me remind you that you have carried your potential to the pinnacle of educational success by matriculating through the rigors of Summit High School.
So, I say to you, you have arrived. You have arrived at the doorstep of possibilities. And as you bravely accept the invitation, here are 5 don’ts that I want you to remember.
Don’t forget the excitement of your youth.
Embrace the challenges of meeting new people, finding new hobbies, and gaining deeper perspectives. This will give you fortitude to be confident in times of change.
Don’t let your childhood curiosity fade.
It is not always the answers that provide insight, but rather the questions are what show you where to look to find innovation. This will give you courage to find direction.
Don’t let your reason be without passion, nor your passion be without reason.
To be passionate without having a reason will leave your decisions wandering with the wind, and reason alone, despite all its logic, will make your actions empty, without passion. This will allow you to have clear intent in your choices.
Don’t leave your story unfinished.
Commit to yourself, commit to becoming the best version of you. Regardless of what exterior conditions may exist, know that you are the core of your world. Remain steady, focused, and prepared, for when opportunity, timing, and sometimes a little luck align; then you will be ready for your moment.
This will allow you to find your North Star, ever constant.
No matter what happens around you, you will be steady, and you will never be lost. You will always know who you are.
Don’t be afraid of the dark.
Every day meets the night. At times, the world will be a place full of confusion, volatility, rushed minds, and rapid change. There are things within your control and there are things that are not. Day and night happen regardless of who you are or what you do.
When darkness falls, don’t search for the light somewhere outside of yourself, because you have all the skills within you, to bring forth the light."
After all the names were called and each had received their diploma, the 'caps' part of the maroon-colored cap and gown garb were sent skyward, signifying the conclusion of one chapter and the beginning of the next.
2018 SCHOLARSHIP AWARDS
ADELE M. LYNCH NURSING SCHOLARSHIP- JULIA BALDACCHINO, JOSEPHINE ROBERTSand KAMILAHTORRILLO
ADRIENNE REID MEMORIAL ATHLETIC SCHOLARSHIP- MARGARET ROBB
ALBERT J. BARTHOLOMEW SCHOLARSHIP-NATALIE AGUILERA, HAJRACHOUDHRY, AKEAPOTICANO and BAILEY TROBAUGH
AMERICAN LEGION LINDSEY STREET POST #322 / THE ELWOOD C. CORNOG, JR. AMERICAN CHARACTER AWARD- KEYSHAWNREESE
ARTHUR SCHROEDER MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP- WILLIAM VITTON
BEVERLY JEANNE WELSH SCHOLARSHIP- CHRISTINA GUO, TATYANALEWISand MARY NELSON
BILL O’CONNOR “#39” LACROSSE AWARD- JOSEPH PERSCHE
C. ARTHUR TORELLMEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP- JOSHUA SMALLand JOHN STEWART
CATHERINE HATHAWAY TECHNOLOGY SCHOLARSHIP- EMMA COHRON
THE CHRIST CHILD SOCIETY OF SUMMIT SCHOLARSHIP- JULIE-ANNA BROWNand AALIASMITH
CLARA WULFFMEMORIAL AWARD- VANESSA HERRERA-ROJAS
DAWNEHAUSMANMEMORIAL / SUMMIT SOCCER CLUB SCHOLARSHIP- ANDRES CHACON and LEILA ESPOSITO
ELLIS WALLING SCHOLARSHIP- JOSEPH VOSTAL
EMILY BENSINGERMEMORIAL PRIZE IN BUSINESS SUBJECTS- MAIA SIRABIAN
ERIC JAMES SOBELMEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP IN BAND- INGAHAO
FORTNIGHTLY CLUB SCHOLARSHIPS
THE SHERRY RAWSONMEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP- JULIE-ANNA BROWN
FORTNIGHTLY CLUB SCHOLARSHIP- AKEAPOTICANO
FORTNIGHTLY CLUB SCHOLARSHIP- MAIA SIRABIAN
FRANK AND ROSE DIMUCCIOMEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP- HAJRACHOUDHRY
FRIEDA M. CRICHFIELDSCHOLARSHIP- ANDRES CHACON
GRAND SUMMIT HOTEL SCHOLARSHIP- JOSEPH SHEPARD
HALE FAMILY SCHOLARSHIP- HAMAILIQBAL
HARRY & GENEVIEVE KATESSUMMIT KIWANIS MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP- RAHIEMHUNT, JR.
HOWARD S. ANDERSON SCHOLAR ATHLETE AWARD- MEGAN ABATE, MADELINE GAETA, HELEN LOUISE JOHNSON, STEPHEN SAJER, COLE SCHNEIDER, ANNA TURK, WILLIAM VITTON and GREGORY VLASS
IMMIGRANT STUDENT SCHOLARSHIP- SAMANTHA FERNANDEZ, MIGUEL GARCIAand CINDY TORRES
JEFFERSON SCHOOL PTO SCHOLARSHIP- HAMAILIQBAL
JUNIOR LEAGUE OF SUMMIT SHIRLEY WIGHT KEENEYVOLUNTARISM SCHOLARSHIP- LEILA ESPOSITO
KARL KELLER SCOUTING AWARD- MICHAEL GREENSTEIN
KATIE HADLEY MEMORIAL LACROSSE SCHOLARSHIP- NICHOLAS THOMSON
LAKELAND BANK SCHOLARSHIP- JOSHUA SMALL
LOIS MONTI / JEFFERSON SCHOOL INTERNATIONAL CLUB SCHOLARSHIP- KAMILAHTORRILLO
MAMELOUISE REYNOLDS McGEORGEFOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIP- MARCUS STEVENSON
McNANYCHARITABLE FOUNDATION, INC. MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP AWARD- ANDRES CHACON and CHRISTINA RICHSON
NATIONAL SPIRITUALIST ASSOCIATION OF CHURCHES STOW FAMILY MEMORIAL FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIP- CECILIA SANG
NATIONAL HISPANIC RECOGNITION PROGRAM- JOHN ALVAREZ, EMMA COHRON, PEDRO GUICARDIand STEVE MOLINA
NATIONAL MERIT COLLEGE-SPONSORED SCHOLARSHIP NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY- RACHEL KANTOR
NATIONAL MERIT CORPORATE-SPONSORED SCHOLARSHIPS
PUBIC SERVICE ENTERPRISE GROUP- EMILY POMMIER
PFIZER, INC- MATTHEW E. SUPRAN
NATIONAL MERIT SCHOLARSHIP FINALISTS- JAMES CHO. ALYSSA GAO, RACHEL KANTOR, EMILY POMMIER and MATTHEW E. SUPRAN
NEW JERSEY ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL BUSINESS OFFICIALS DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD SCHOLARSHIP IN HONOR OF LOUIS J. PEPE - JOHN JACOBELLO
NEW JERSEY ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL BUSINESS OFFICIALS BUSINESS ADMINISTRATOR OF THE YEAR AWARD SCHOLARSHIP IN HONOR OF LOUIS J. PEPE - JOHN JACOBELLO
PEP PROGRAM SCHOLARSHIP- NKOZIABDUR-RAHMAN, DANIEL CAMPOS, SANIYAJONES, STEVE MOLINAand ICISYSSADLER
PICOZZIFAMILY FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIP- HAJRACHOUDHRY
ROTARY CLUB OF SUMMIT & NEW PROVIDENCE SCHOLARSHIP
WILBER NELSON SCHOLARSHIP- HAMAILIQBAL
BUD SMITH SCHOLARSHIP- STEVE MOLINA
ROTARY CLUB SCHOLARSHIPS- ANTHONY CUSUMANO, TATYANALEWISand KEYSHAWNREESE
SANTIAGO DANIEL ABUT MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP- HAMAILIQBAL
SOPHIA KIM AND JUNE CHANG GLOBAL HERITAGE SCHOLARSHIP- CHRISTINA GUO
SPARCSCHOLARSHIP IN MEMORY OF MARY SNIECKUS - LUCY BLOCK. BENJAMIN ERRIG, JULIET HUNEKE, ALISHA KEWALRAMANI, KIMBERLY LEE, ERIN MANION, REID PHILLIPS, KEYSHAWNREESE, BENJAMIN SCHACHTER, KATELYN SCHROEDERand JOHN STEWART
SPARCTECHNICAL THEATRESCHOLARSHIP IN MEMORY OF BENJAMIN ROBERT ZUKOFF- SARAH BEATTY
SUBURBAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE PERRY ROOT AND WILLIAM STAMPESMEMORIAL AWARD- MIGUEL GARCIA
SUMMIT AFRICAN AMERICAN ACTION ASSOCIATION SCHOLARSHIP
S4A SCHOLARSHIP - MARCUS STEVENSONand JORDAN deGROOT-COLEMAN
THE ELZADIE(“ZADIE”) B. SMITH S4A SCHOLARSHIP- NKOZIABDUR-RAHMAN
SUMMIT AREA PUBLIC FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIP- JULIE-ANNA BROWN, ALIA SMITH
SUMMIT BUSINESS & PROFESSIONAL WOMEN’S FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIP- EMMA CHO and JANE RASWEILER
THE JOAN OLEKSIKMEMORIAL AWARD- AALIASMITH
THE KATHY McCABEMEMORIAL AWARD- HANNAH ZIPF
SUMMIT COLLEGE CLUB SCHOLARSHIP- VICTORIA HARVEYand EMILY KOSTOLANSKY
SUMMIT EDUCATION ASSOCIATION FRANCES FLESCH SCHOLARSHIP- ANDRES CHACON, ALYSSA GAO, CLAIRE GOUDREAU and HAMAILIQBAL
SUMMIT F.A.S.T. A.C.T. KEN KUEBLERMEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP- DORIAN JACKSONand ICISYSSADLER
SUMMIT FIRST AID SQUAD ALICE NICHOLS MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP- KATHRYN CHANG, ALEXANDRA HAGGERTY, JEFFREY LOPEZ, JOSEPHINE ROBERTSand AALIASMITH
SUMMIT GIRLS FAST PITCH SOFTBALL LEAGUE SCHOLARSHIP- KENDALL BLOMFIELD and LUCIE MILLER
SUMMIT HIGH MUSIC PARENTS ASSOCIATION SCHOLARSHIP- JULIA BALDACCHINO, LUCY BLOCK, CHRISTOPHER CUMMINGS, CHRISTINA GANGI, MIMI LAWS, ERIN MANION, PABLO ROJASand MARCUS STEVENSON
SUMMIT HIGH SCHOOL MUSIC PARENTS ASSOCIATION CAROL CLYNEHASSERTSENIOR SCHOLARSHIP- CHRISTOPHER CUMMINGS, ALYSSA GAOand JOHN STEWART
SUMMIT HIGH SCHOOL PTO SCHOLARSHIP- DYLAN INGERMAN, JEFFREY LOPEZ, KATE McKEE, EMILY POMMIERand BENJAMIN SCHACHTER
SUMMIT JUNIOR BASEBALL LEAGUE SCHOLARSHIP- ANTHONY CUSUMANOand GREGORY VLASS
SUMMIT LIONS FOUNDATION JACK J. NIEVERGELT SCHOLARSHIP- KESLEYSOUZA
SUMMIT POLICE ATHLETIC LEAGUE SCHOLARSHIP- JULIE-ANNA BROWN, HAMAILIQBAL, AKEAPOTICANO, KESLEYSOUZAand KAMILAHTORRILLO
THOMAS I. GLASSERMEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP FUND- DORIAN JACKSON
UNION COUNTY SCHOOL COUNSELORS ASSOCIATION ‘WE CARE’ AWARD- JULIE-ANNA BROWN, MAXWELL HAYFORD and TATYANALEWIS
UNION HISPANASCHOLARSHIP- JEFFREY LOPEZ, STEVE MOLINAand ALLISON RODRIGUEZ
WASHINGTON SCHOOL PTO SCHOLARSHIP- ANDRES CHACON
WESLEY K. BURTON SUMMIT CIVIC FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIP- ANDRES CHACON
WILSON ALLEN SUMMIT CIVIC FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIP- CHRISTINA GUO