With the annual Convocation ceremony on Wednesday, August 24, Hathaway Brown’s Upper School launched the 2016-2017 school year with all the pomp and circumstance befitting such an occasion.
Led by the strains of bagpipe music, 9th- through 12th-graders marched together behind bright Legacy Day flags of their corresponding class colors through a sea of cheering parents and faculty and staff members who welcomed them back to the corner of Courtland and North Park boulevards for another year of learning and growth. The entire scene will be repeated in reverse when the Class of 2017 travels through a gauntlet of well-wishers who will clap them out into the world at the close of their Commencement ceremony next spring. Students also welcomed HB’s 14th Head of School, Dr. Fran Bisselle, to the community with gifts of flowers and well wishes.
The Convocation procession ended at The Ahuja Auditorium, where the Upper School student and faculty body gathered for the first Morning Meeting of the year. Dr. Bisselle used the time to unveil the theme that will guide the school’s work in 2016-2017: Rising Boldly: Embracing Challenges; Seizing Opportunities. The theme will be used to guide the work of the entire student body in the coming year. The sentiment comes directly from the school mission statement, which reads in part, “At this moment in history, there is great need for women of vision and courage who are empowered for leadership in a multicultural and globalized society. We seek to answer that need by inspiring our students to achieve their utmost potential, and to rise boldly to the challenges of our times.”
Next, Student Senate President Ally Persky ’17 took the podium to deliver a thoughtful and beautifully written speech about the school theme and the way she hopes that she and her classmates will be able to put the idea into action throughout the year and throughout their lives. (Read the full text of her remarks here.)
Finally, Associate Head of School and Upper School Director Sue Sadler warmly welcomed all of the new and returning students, saying how proud and grateful she is to be surrounded by so many remarkable young women who demonstrate every day the grit, determination, resiliency, and enthusiasm it takes to “rise boldly” to every occasion. (Read the full text of her remarks here.)
Grades one through eight begin class tomorrow, while HB’s Early Childhood students will head back to school next week.
Here’s to a wonderful 2016-2017 school year!