On Wednesday, for the first time in 14 months, the Prep gym was abuzz with nearly a full class year of students at the same time. A modified version of the traditional senior-faculty breakfast (speakers in the gym, breakfast in the courtyard!) brought the Class of 2021 together to reflect on their time at Prep, look to the future, and honor four classmates with Prep Spirit Awards.
As is customary at the senior-faculty breakfast, the class voted on a faculty speaker and a student speaker in advance. Ms. Mary Anne McElroy of the history department acknowledged the challenges of the past year—at Prep and throughout the world. But citing the Class of 1942 as an example, she reminded the seniors that Prep upperclassmen finding their time at Grand & Warren disrupted by events in the broader world is perhaps rare, but certainly not unprecedented. And having worked through these difficult days, she said, “You now join the long maroon line of Prep men that have come before you, stretching all the way back to 1872.”
Pat Boll, ’21 offered a humorous take on the ups and downs of this unusual senior year, but concluded on a more serious note. “I hold the most important lesson life has taught me, using Prep as its instrument: life is short.” Recalling the last, seemingly ordinary, class day before Prep switched to all-virtual learning last spring, he told his classmates “Live the rest of your life as if it’s March 12, 2020, because as you all know, it certainly could be…I’m talking about the next 50, 60, 100 years, whatever you’re doing…you have the time; it’s what you do with that time that matters.”
With the May 1 deadline for college decisions just around the corner, the seniors were encouraged to wear college sweatshirts reflecting their choices, which made for a colorful scene in the gym bleachers when they gathered for a group photo.
It was then time to present the last round of Prep Spirit Awards to the Class of 2021. Congratulations to Christopher Green, Ryan Ha, Vikram Kadyan, and John Scheurer, who were recognized as unsung heroes of the Prep community!
After adding some closing remarks, Dr. Gomez thanked the faculty and staff on behalf of the seniors, who responded with a standing ovation. Without question, the sounds of hearty applause filling a gym that has all too often been virtually silent was a gift in itself, and a sign of things to come at Prep.