By Justin Voss

The past week has been a blur of activity for our seniors and our faculty as well and we are feeling a little bittersweet here at Fairmont Prep. On Tuesday our seniors received their caps and gowns and then were recognized in the senior farewell. During the farewell, students received academic, athletic, and extra-curricular honors. It was great to hear about their many accomplishments and to see how incredibly talented the Class of 2019 has been. The teachers hit on a common theme of compassion that has resonated through this group of students at an incredibly high level. The connections that these seniors have made on campus with their teachers, coaches, counselors, and everyone really have shown what a Fairmont education is all about. Multiple teachers mentioned how hard it was going to be to say goodbye to the Class of 2019.

Thursday evening was the actual graduation where our seniors gathered with family, friends, and the Fairmont community to celebrate their accomplishments. As I sat behind all of the graduates I got to see the reactions as friend’s names were called and families yelled for joy as their student walked or danced across the stage. Headmaster Mendoza gave a heartfelt address to the graduates encouraging them to find their own definition of joy and happiness, along with a warning to not sleep too long for fear of snakes (it’s a long story). The Valedictorian, Kameel Khabaz, encouraged the graduates to not mistake inexperience for foolishness and to trust one’s gut. Our keynote speaker, Ryan Patel, a frequent contributor on CNN and successful businessman challenged students to take on an entrepreneurial spirit in everything that they do. Throughout it all Assistant Head of School, Carolyn Lucia, kept the program moving with style and grace. We also enjoyed music from a Fairmont Prep quarter as well as our concert choir.

The highlight though is watching the students walk across the stage, hearing their names read aloud as they receive their diplomas. It is the culmination of four years of work and memories made. As they tossed their caps into the air at the end and sang the alma mater for one last time it was bittersweet.

And finally, our graduates celebrated with family and friends by taking a ton of pictures and shedding a few tears.

While it may be hard to say goodbye to any of our graduates I take comfort in knowing that they are off to bigger and better things and that Fairmont did a great job preparing them for their next journey. Farewell Class of 2019!