The Class of 2023 was recognized and applauded at Rye Country Day’s 154th Graduation Exercises on June 9.
The ceremony, which was held in the Scott A. Nelson Athletic Center, featured remarks from Student Body President Tyler Moyer, Senior Class President Adam Kern, Senior Class Vice President Braden Bass, Head of School Randall Dunn, and Upper School Principal Peter Quagliaroli. The Upper School Concert Choir and a capella group, the WildScats, also performed.
Dylan Mentzer introduced the special guest speaker, her grandmother, the Honorable Judge Judith Sheindlin, who offered words of wisdom to the graduating class. Judge Judy praised the graduates and urged them to always be true to themselves, to seize the day, and to become personal champions of solutions. The memorable words of wisdom she offered included, “Whatever you do, give it your best effort. Your standard has to be your personal best” and “Let no one but you define you.” In closing, she said: “Life is a wonderful journey — take it from me. Your education at Rye Country Day prepared you for the adventure. Enjoy the ride and carpe diem.”
Concluding his first year at the helm, Head of School Randall Dunn congratulated the graduates and shared his admiration for the Class of 2023. Adding a personal note, Mr. Dunn stated, “This is an especially meaningful moment for me, too, as you are my first graduating class at Rye Country Day. I look forward to following your progress in college and beyond, and you will always have a very special place in my heart.” He also acknowledged the students’ strength of character and resilience in contending with the challenges of the pandemic throughout their high school years.
Commending the students’ achievement, Mr. Dunn added, “At Rye Country Day, you have acquired knowledge and values that will serve you well in the years ahead.” He continued, “You are critical and creative thinkers. You respect and appreciate differences. You make connections across disciplines and you collaborate easily with others. You embody the motto, <Not for Self, but for Service>. Our world needs people and leaders like you. Our world needs your minds and your hearts.”
The Head of School closed his remarks with a call to action and an expression of pride and gratitude. “Go forth — and make this world a better place. Your teachers, families, friends, and I will be cheering you on from the sidelines — today, and for years to come. Thank you, graduates, for all the joy and excellence you’ve brought to this campus. This will always be your second home.”