This post is also available in: Spanish
“When the daylight comes I’ll have to go. But, tonight I’m gonna hold you so close.” With the lyrics of hit song Daylight by Maroon 5, the 25 graduating students of the Abraham Lincoln School bid an emotional farewell to their fellow classmates, friends, teachers and of course the school that had sheltered them for so long.
Having studied together at the Abraham Lincoln School for the last 14 years, the graduation ceremony celebrated at the Flamboyant Conference Center in Casa de Campo, brought tears of joy and sadness as the graduates eagerly looked forward to their future, with a wistful glance to the past.
The graduation ceremony began at 7:30pm with the procession to the song “Only Time” by Enya, when each graduate accompanied by a member of their family was led into the hall to be greeted by the smiling faces of their proud family, friends and teachers.
In a break from tradition, the stage was decorated with childhood pictures of each of the graduates, while outside a video made a couple of days before played, where the young graduates appeared getting ready for their graduation, including touching tributes from their parents wishing them the best for the future.
Many of the 25 graduates took part in the ceremony addressing the audience in both English and Spanish. Miranda Rodriguez and María Strofer led the Welcome Address; Vittoria Bella and Alexandra Papadopoulos, the Motto and Thoughts Address; Chanelle Bermúdez, Nicole Bueno, Dania Cedano and Ana Strofer, the Class Poem “Into the woods”; Veronica Avanzini and Celine Raselli, the Thank you Address, while the Masters of Ceremonies were Madeline Paris, Génesis Perdomo, Julio Febles, Belfrank Hernandez, Nicole Rodríguez, Dayie Silvestre, Braulio De Los Santos and Paula Domínguez.
As well as the Headmaster’s Address with Mr. Harry Magee, one of the most memorable parts of the ceremony was the Valedictory Address led by Santa Ramirez and Eliana Alba, who achieved a 3.98 GPA, the highest in the school’s history. Congratulations Eliana – that is quiet an achievement!
Eliana Alba reading the Valedictory Address
The special guest was the President of the Dominican Constitutional Court, Milton Ray Guevara, who gave an entertaining speech, in which he urged the graduates to go ahead and stand out wherever they go and also reminded them of how the privileged they are to have for studied at the Abraham Lincoln School.
As the ceremony drew to a close, Director of the Abraham Lincoln School board, Dr. Leonardo Matos García handed out the graduation diplomas to the graduating class.
At the end of the ceremony, the Abraham Lincoln School graduating class of 2013 filed proudly out of the conference hall to the song “Just one last time” by Sia, and made their first steps as graduates to begin the rest of their lives.
Here we share with you the words of some of the graduates and the good wishes of some proud parents.
“I’m very happy. It’s like as if I were graduating,” said Johanna Strofer, mother of graduate María Amelia Strofer.
“I’m super happy and excited because she is my only daughter and she’s a very mature girl, I know she will be very successful as will her cousin Maria Amelia“, said Ana Maria Santoni Strofer, mother of graduate Ana Estela Strofer.
“I’m very proud of my two granddaughters,” said Guillermina Aristy of Strofer, grandmother of María Amelia and Ana Estela Strofer.
“I am very excited and proud of the accomplishments I’ve made, because today I am fulfilling one of my many goals. I dedicate this graduation to my family, especially to my brother who passed away. And I’m sure wherever he is he is very happy with what I have achieved.”
— Madeline Paris, Abraham Lincoln School graduate 2013
“I am very excited and proud because she has been a very good student and I wish her a successful future”
— Alessandra Avanzini, mother of Veronica Avanzini.
The following pictures were taken during the 31st graduation ceremony of Abraham Lincoln School, on Friday the 14 of June 2013:
Photo credit: The top photo and the last photos in the gallery below were contributed by ©NicoleAlbaPhotography
The Abraham Lincoln School, located within Central Romana, in the town of La Romana, is a private school for the children of employees of the Central Romana Corporation, but is also attended by other children who pay yearly tuition fees.