Gould Commencement Saturday
The Gould Academy Class of 2010 will receive diplomas on Saturday during the school’s 174th commencement exercises.
The Reverend Virginia S. Rickeman of the West Parish Congregational Church will give the invocation, and the keynote speakers will be Northeastern University President Joseph E. Aoun and his son, technology entrepreneur Adrian Aoun. Valedictorian Sikandar Ahmadi and student speaker Marshall Peterson will also address their classmates, teachers, and guests prior to the awarding of honors and diplomas.
Joseph E. Aoun is an internationally known scholar in linguistics and is the seventh president of Northeastern University. He arrived at Northeastern from the University of Southern California’s College of Letters, Arts & Sciences—the largest school within the university, where he was the inaugural holder of the Anna H. Bing Dean’s Chair. He received his PhD in linguistics and philosophy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1981; his diploma of advanced studies in general and theoretical linguistics from the University of Paris (France) VIII in 1977; and his masters in oriental languages and literature from Saint Joseph University (Beirut, Lebanon) in 1975. In 2006 he was presented with the Chevalier de L’ordre des Palmes Academiques (Knight of the Order of the Academic Palms) from the French Government, and in May of 2007 Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion presented him the degree of doctor of humane letters, honoris causa. President Aoun has published seven books and written more than 40 articles.
Adrian Aoun received a bachelor of arts in psychology, a bachelor of science in computer science and computer engineering, and a master of science in computer science from the University of Southern California.
In 1997 he co-founded and grew Creative and Logical Solutions Inc, a web software development and hosting company that was sold privately in 2006. Over that time he also grew his own consulting business, Aoun Consulting, where he provided technology solutions to clients to help them enhance business performance and develop new sources of revenue. His client list included the U.S. Navy as well as several Fortune 500 companies.
After work as a program manager at Microsoft Corporation and a director of programs at Fox Interactive Media, Adrian founded Wavii Inc. in 2009. The company is currently building a real-time semantic search engine and has secured several rounds of angel and venture capital investment.
Marshall Peterson is the son of Michael and Melissa Peterson of Santa Fe, N M. He has attended Gould for two years and was a student proctor his senior year. Over his academic career Marshall’s course load has included AP U.S. History, creative writing, and AP government and politics. A man of the outdoors, Marshall participated in rock climbing his senior year and was a member of the outing club both years he was at Gould. During his tenure, Marshall also participated in the Drama Program with roles in “Little Shop of Horrors” and this year’s “25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.”
On Friday afternoon, Reverend Rickeman will deliver the invocation at Gould’s traditional baccalaureate ceremonies at the West Parish Congregational Church. The graduating class has chosen classmate Thomas Voigt and art teacher Woodleigh Hughes to address them.
Thomas Voigt is the son of Dennis and Susan Voigt of Essex Junction, Vt. He has attended Gould for four years. Over his academic career at Gould, his course load included AP calculus, AP statistics, AP US History, and AP literature and composition. A talented writer, Tommy was a peer tutor in the Gould Writing Center. He participated in a number of athletic programs including prep snowboarding, skateboarding and varsity golf. His senior year he served as a student proctor. He will attend Skidmore College in the fall.
Woodleigh Hughes received his BFA from Alfred University, and did his post-graduate work at Kansas City Art Institute. From 1980 through 2001 he maintained his studio outside New York City, where he produced a line of functional and decorative earthenware ceramics. His work has been shown extensively in galleries and exhibitions across the nation. Woody has taught at Dowling College, Parsons School of Design, as well as at over sixty workshops across the country and internationally. His work can be found in many collections and it appears in publications and periodicals such as “Best of Pottery, Volumes 1 & 2”, “Working with Clay”, and “Ceramics Monthly.” In 2001, Woody returned to Western Maine and his alma mater, Gould Academy, where he teaches pottery and design. Most recently in January 2010, Woody was named one of the world’s most notable potters in the popular Masters series – Masters: Earthenware published by Lark Books, a division of Sterling Publishing Co. Only 38 internationally noted ceramists received the honor.
On Friday evening the Gould Academy music department, under the direction of James McLaughlin III and Jenny Cooper, will present its annual commencement concert in Bingham Auditorium. The concert, which begins at 7:30 p.m., will feature both instrumental and vocal selections. It is open to the public and there is no charge for admission.