Gould Class of 2010 graduates
By TUCKER KIMBALL/
Gould Academy presented diplomas to 69 seniors at its 174 commencement exercises on Saturday, May 29.
With bagpipes in hand, Gould alumnus Hillary Hough '07 led the traditional processional of speakers, faculty and graduating seniors from Hanscom Hall to the tent, where several hundred family and friends gathered to celebrate the class of 2010.
The Rev. Virginia S. Rickeman of the West Parish Congregational Church gave the invocation.
Richard Packard '66, president of the Gould Academy Board of Trustees, introduced keynote speakers Joseph E. Aoun, president of Northeastern University, and his son, Adrian Aoun, a technology entrepreneur.
Joseph E. Aoun is an internationally known scholar in linguistics, and is the seventh president of Northeastern University.
Dr. Aoun spoke about today’s interconnected technologically driven world and how a Gould graduate’s higher education experience will be different from that of his own generation.
“We are seeing new opportunities, new professions being generated on a daily basis …. The purpose of college and college education has shifted dramatically. When I went to college, the purpose was very simple. Educators wanted us to get ready for a career.
“Nowadays we know that you all are going to have multiple careers, and we know that the purpose of education is not to get to you ready for your first career but for life.”
Mr. Aoun spoke of his own experience of leaving a successful web company to start his own business and what it means to define your own fulfillment.
“When you take a step back, we're (Wavii Inc.) very early on in our process. Who knows, we may succeed; we may not. But, at the end of the day, it’s completely worth it, because I know I’m following my passions and fail or not, succeed or not I know that’s where my happiness is going to come from.”
Valedictorian Sikandar Ahmadi of Kabul, Afghanistan spoke of his and his classmates’ shared experience.
“Snapshots of my story, ladies and gentlemen, are an example to the stories of the 68 other students who are impatiently waiting to receive their diplomas.
“Every one of us was challenged in similar and different ways …. However the situation, we adapted, and whatever the requirements or demands, we responded. As a result each of us had monumental success and opportunities throughout our career at this academy,” he said.
Marshall Peterson of Santa Fe, N.M. was chosen by his classmates to present the senior student address.
Marshall spoke of the difficulty of “goodbyes” and how they don’t fit members of the Gould community.
“So maybe it’s ok that none of us can summon up a sincere goodbye to save our lives. We mean it when we say ‘see you later’ or ‘see you soon.’
“But we just can’t manage the indefinite farewell. But really, all our inability to be final says about us is that we honestly believe we’ll see that person soon, and that the ‘goodbye’ isn’t forever.”
Head of School Daniel Kunkle then announced the presentation of honors to members of the graduating class. (See Page 17 for a complete list.)
Dan Kunkle and Richard Packard then presented diplomas to the graduating seniors, and the Rev. Rickeman gave the benediction.
On Friday evening before commencement, Gould held its traditional baccalaureate exercises at the West Parish Congregational Church with the Rev. Rickeman officiating.
The class selected graduating senior Thomas Voigt of Essex Junction, Vt. and art teacher Woody Hughes to address them at the ceremony.
After baccalaureate, the graduates and their parents attended a reception under the tent and a special dinner in Gould’s Ordway Hall, followed by the annual Spring Concert in Bingham Auditorium.