“Don’t cry because it’s over; smile because it happened.”
On Saturday morning, despite predictions of thunderstorms, the sun poured down onto our school, giving the seniors the final and fitting parting gift of a glorious graduation day. Families from all over the country and five continents gathered in our tiny school, testament to our global reach: SungHo Kim, InKi Kim, HaNeul Kim, Dean Kang and Ki Hyuck Lee’s parents from South Korea; Henry Tang and Sunny Zhen’s families from China; David Walker’s family from Gabon; Chris Sears’s family from London; Joel Seidner’s grandmothers from Colombia and Peru; and Zachary Doenmez’s brother Baran from Turkey via Skype. The seniors glowed with excitement as they gathered on the Quad, and processed in to fanfares.
Graduation itself was a mix of emotions with wonderful speeches and beautiful, poignant music. Caleb Davis invoked the higher powers to begin, and Peter Imhoff followed by reminding us that this is still the Lehmann’s school. Carleton Ladd ’60 led off his speech asking everyone to sing Happy Birthday to Dublin School, marking the beginning of the 75th year celebrations, and exhorted the seniors to “learn another language” whether it be an actual dialect or a field of expertise through which to communicate and act in the world.
Student speakers Perrin Herman ’10 and Sunny Zeng ’10 gave amazing speeches, reminding us that the process is more important than the product or any title earned. Perrin began his speech by describing his journey to Dublin School and the way in which the community here became his family, saying “This is the kind of environment where you learn the things that can’t be taught.” He wrapped up his speech by saying “Don’t cry because it’s over; smile because it happened.” Sunny spoke about the ways in which Dublin taught her to overcome disappointment and develop consciousness of each moment, describing “Simple awareness and the courage to make it happen. There is no point of having your dream come true if you are sleeping the entire time.”
Dublin’s new Chamber Music Ensemble played “Last Carnival” by Norihiro Tsuru, featuring Min Young Jeong ’12 on violin, Ki Hyuck Lee ’10 on piano, a debut on cello by SungHo Kim ’10. Former Dean of Students John Marquis returned to campus to give the Senior Goodbye, telling students “Don’t let anyone else define you,” and concluding by having the seniors recite his immortal advice: Work Hard and Make Good Decisions!
The graduation ceremony was followed by many hugs and tears, promises of parties, and gatherings over vacation. A gorgeous luncheon was served, and soon after students and families headed off for the summer. We send our seniors to their further adventures with pride, confidence, high hopes and a lump in our throats.
And as Sunny Zeng concluded her speech, we too would like to urge our graduates to: “Fall in love with the process and the results will follow. Just try. Love acting more than you want to be an actor. Love healing more than you want to be a doctor. Love painting more than you want to be an artist. Love teaching more than you want to be a teacher. The joy is in the process. And good job for trying even if you fail.”
We will miss you, seniors.