Almaden Country Day School graduated 41 eighth graders on Thursday, June 6, on campus in Almaden Valley, San Jose.
After the pledge of allegiance led by student Constantine James Blastos, Head of school Dr. Olaf Jorgenson presented to the graduates his reflections on their generation. "Generation Z is also called the Entrepreneurial Generation which is appropriate for these students, the Class of 2019, given their academic precociousness, the work they've done in our science and engineering fairs, in the Imaginarium, class projects and presentations…it's predicted that these students in Gen Z will use their tech savvy as a platform for entrepreneurial achievements that we can't begin to imagine."
Amelie Pak, this year's speech contest winner, underscored Dr. Jorgenson's message by stressing how "ACDS has taught us that if we put in our hearts and minds, we have the potential to fulfill our seemingly unreachable dreams."
Almaden Country Day School also gave a Founder's Award to a child who most wholly represents the ideals of kindness, service and joy, as originally established by founder, Mrs. Nan Hunter. This year, Ambika Ramadurai received the award presented by Mr. Mark Nelson, middle school faculty member.
As in years past, graduates composed and offered tributes to every teacher who had taught them through their academic journey. The teachers also shared their favorite memories and highlighted the special qualities about each student in this especially intimate graduation ceremony.
The school's graduation traditions also include a song sung by the Apple Tree-o, comprised of Mrs. Michelle Ahlgren, Mr. Gary DeMoss and Mrs. Jackie Galletta. The song, "Wherever You Go," tells the students that while parting is inevitable, their teachers hope they achieve their dreams and carry what they learn with them "wherever they go."
" It's gratifying to launch this very capable and accomplished Class of 2019 into their high schools as ambassadors for Almaden Country Day School! I hope that they will all be challenged, stimulated, and cared for as they have been at ACDS, and look forward to following their adventures and achievements for many years to come," mused Dr. Jorgenson.
The new graduates will transition to a variety of public and private high schools in the fall – all who applied to private high schools were accepted.