Suffield High School’s 80th commencement exercise was a happy experience, with proud families and friends applauding on a perfect June 15 morning on Ted Beneski Field. Class President Anna Casinghino spoke briefly about the extraordinary skills of her classmates and urged them to keep their skills growing. John Richter of the Board of Education commented that the class had had a lot of help along the way so far, and he said “The power in you is limitless, but it’s up to you now to find that power.”
Salutatorian Rabi Zulfiquar, a top debater in the Connecticut Valley Debate League, quoted Kierkegaard as he asked, “How can we find meaning in Life?” and answered, “Live authentically!” Valedictorian Ziad Hassan, a fellow top debater, told his classmates “It’s been an honor to be here with you,” but he felt he really couldn’t give them advice, and that’s where he ended his talk.
Principal James Blain thanked the two class advisors for the Class of ’19, Christena Reiser and Kyle Kibby, and thanked Paula Anderson for organizing the commencement. He thanked all the school staff and teachers for their help in this, his first year at SHS. Then he advised the class, “Be fearless in following the spirit that sets your path.”
Assistant Superintendent of Schools Michelle Zawawi said to the Class, “It’s time for you to set your own expectations. You are ready. But always remember: Make good choices.” She said she had asked many of the students what they would like her to talk about, but along with many diverse thoughts, one answer was universal. They all told her, “Be Brief!” So then she sat down.