—Suha Choi ’22
High school graduation is often a time when a great mix of feelings exists. It is a time of exhaustion, joy, regret, pride, and almost everything in between. As new changes lie ahead, our seniors had countless things to say about their feelings on the topic of graduation and their future journeys: “I’m really excited to move on to bigger and better things, but I am also really sad to leave the people with whom I have made amazing connections. Although I often complained about being here, I am so thankful for everything this place had given me,” said Taylor Yanchuk ’19. In particular, she wished to thank Jocelyn Cote ’22, Ainsley DuBose ’19, Jake Lengel ’19, Ms. Maddock, Ms. Collins, Mr. Corazzini, and many more for making her time at St. Mark’s memorable.
Gift Paekul ’19, a graduating senior from Thailand, also expressed her mixed emotions about the upcoming graduation. She feels both nervous and excited about moving on to college. Gift mentioned that a close-knit community at St. Mark’s was always very welcoming, and she felt as if she got to know everyone, even the people she never had classes with. She also noted that every St. Marker smiled or waved while walking past her in the hallways. Due to all these comforts and greetings from students at St. Mark's, Gift feels that moving into a bigger community will give her a different experience. While she is nervous about this change, she also looks forward to meeting new people and visiting new places at her college.
While the shift from high school to a new place is already a big change for young adults, they often find the change even more difficult because of the many things lost during this change. A few seniors around the campus were asked what they would miss the most about St. Mark’s. Out of the many great things that out school carries, a very popular response to this question was the personal relationships they have built in the community. St. Mark’s is more than just a school with classes; it is a place where people live, discuss, and sleep. Therefore, it is not a very big surprise that the relationships built at St. Mark’s are often very deep and strong. Kennedy Petties ‘19 responded that she would miss the close-knit relationships she had fostered with the faculty members, who had almost become her 'second family.’ Kennedy describes that "it feels really different to go out to the real world where some people may be nice to you for a purpose or in order to get something out of you unlike the faculties here who are nice to you because they simply love you and wish the best for you.” Relationships with peers and classmates are also a very strong aspect of life at St. Mark’s. Leo Xie ’19 expressed gratitude for the friends and connections he made at the school, in particular, with Rwick Sakar ’19 and Luc Cote ’19. They have been exceptional friends to Leo, and he had never felt the need to hide his true feelings from them. He feels that it would be extremely hard to find such a strong personal connection in any other place: “We did not know each other very well at first, but we became closer and closer throughout the course of the four years. I am very grateful for the friends I have made,” Leo added.
As the end of the academic year approaches, the class of 2019 will soon be headed off to different cities, states, and countries. Whether that new journey would happen at a new college, during a gap year, or at a workplace, the St. Marker team wishes each and every one of them the best of luck.