congratulations, Class of 2018!
John Jay High School's 2018 Commencement was held in the Venetian Theater at Caramoor on Tuesday, June 19.
Themes of happiness and self-acceptance were threaded through speeches from Valedictorian Katherine Ricca and Salutatorian Kaley Mamo. Dr. Steven Siciliano, Principal of John Jay High School, and others highlighted the seniors' accomplishments and spoke of confidence and communication, engagement and effort.
All three of John Jay's a cappella groups performed, and the Key of Knowledge was officially passed on to the Class of 2019.
glimpses of John jay high school's commencement at Caramoor
Kaley Mamo, Salutatorian
"We need to give ourselves the gift of self-acceptance, of allowing ourselves to change our minds, to reject the idea that we have to be what we always thought we’d become.
We need to let ourselves evolve a million times, a trillion times, because our identities are never made of stone. Because we’ll be in a limbo of our own creation for the rest of our lives. Because this evolution, this journey, is how we grow."
Katherine Ricca, Valedictorian
"I’d like to suggest a guiding principle, one that I hold very close to my heart and one that is often glossed over as we race towards the finish line.
In spite of the inevitable changes that will surely uproot your life and your plans at unexpected times, find a way to experience joy."
Senior Class Address, Aaron Cohen
"This is a place that fosters individuality. This is a place that teaches you that the opinion that matters most is your own.
It has shown me that as long as you’re doing what makes YOU happy, you’ll end up with the right people around you, and those who don’t agree or support what you’re doing—and there will always be those people—will go their own way. It has given me confidence. The confidence to be myself, unapologetically."
Opening Remarks: Steven T. Siciliano, Ed.D.
"This class upheld the highest standards of John Jay High School as our graduates again sought and received acceptance into the best colleges and universities for them and their plans and ambitions, while engaging their own unique circumstances with grace and resolve in a time of rapid social change . . .
You have been a wonderful class, thank you for all you have contributed and pursue this next phase of your lives secure in the knowledge you are capable and you are ready. Congratulations!"
Keynote Address: Charles Morales-Thomason
"Before you go to college you still have two months of summer vacation in front of you. Make the most of it.
Take road trips. Go to concerts with your friends. Try something new. Hang out with your mom.
Live a life full of smiles and laughter and friendship and love."