Landmark's 46th Commencement
Seventy-six beaming seniors graduated from Landmark School on Saturday, June 3, equipped with sage advice from Headmaster Bob Broudo. He urged the students to take the time to ask five questions when embarking on new experiences:
Couldn't we at least...?
How can I help?
What truly matters"
Students Deliver Inspiring Speeches
The eloquent student speeches and the long list of accomplishments of the award winners made clear that members of the Class of 2017 are indeed prepared and eager to embrace the next chapter in their lives. Each of the student speakers shared anecdotes about how Landmark changed their life.
In moving Opening Remarks, Olivia Valenti recalled how prior to Landmark she confronted academic challenges as a series of green lights that kept her moving forward.
“Hit all the green lights. This was my way of saying, 'The faster you get things done, the quicker time will go by.'" Once she found her place at Landmark, however, Olivia finally wanted to slow down and enjoy the ride. "Landmark was my red light. It helped me realize that you need to stop and appreciate what’s around you," she said. "The red lights can help you stop and reflect. Reflect on the accomplishments you have made, the amount you have grown and matured, and how an environment like Landmark is rare and special and to not take the people and community for granted."
Jake Skiffington, one of two student speakers, didn’t tell his parents that he earned a spot speaking at graduation. "My mom will never believe this….so I kept it a secret. So here I am mom, speaking at graduation. Surprise!," he said.
Jake recounted being riddled with fear that he’d be called on to read in class and doubting that he’d ever graduate from high school. That was before he enrolled at Landmark. "This school gave me the guidance I needed to be able to pull myself by my bootstraps and go through the barbed wire of academic stress, to stomp through the thick mud of of a constant and overloaded schedule, and leave high school feeling victorious. We stand here today having won the battle."
Eric Alexander Citrano, the other student speaker, shared how honored and humbled he felt to be named after Eric Alexander, the former Landmark student whose name adorns the iconic building. He explained that though dyslexia posed a challenge for him—and many of his classmates—they didn't let it discourage them or get in the way of pursuing their dreams.
"Over these past 10 years at Landmark I have come to realize that if you work hard enough and have people willing to be there for you, nothing is out of reach," he said. "And as I look back at all I have accomplished I can be proud in saying that I earned it. I did what others said was impossible."
In his keynote address, Don Sweeney, a former star defenseman for the Boston Bruins and current general manager, advised students to chart a path paved by process, people, and passion. "The process at Landmark has helped you all prepare for your future,” he said. He called on graduates to build relationships with people and mentors who are invested in their lives. Finally, he told graduates to follow their passion and focus on what they love.
Nearly every graduate will attend college in the fall, and all will be enrolled in the fall of 2018.
2017 Award Winners
Overall Academic Award: Eric Citrano
Prep Academic Award: Olivia Valenti
Nathan Stowes Citizenship Award: Cara O'Neill
Peggie E. Cook Landmark Parents' Association Awards: