Colleton Prep holds commencement for Class of 2019
by The Press and Standard | June 13, 2019 5:00 am
Last Updated: June 12, 2019 at 11:35 am
By CINDY CROSBY
Colleton Preparatory Academy held commencement for the Class of 2019 Friday May 24 during which 25 candidates were presented diplomas, including 15 honor graduates.
Sixteen members of the Class of 2019 were recognized as 12-Year graduates including Anne Garrett Carter, Irving Timothy Benton, Jacob Lee Burttram, Elizabeth Anne Dean, Hannah Grace Drawdy, Anna Grace Griffin, Robert Tyler Hardee, Dylan Ray Kinard, Connor James McMillan, Nina Gabrielle Mescia, Hayden Lee Murdaugh, Jesse Dean Murdaugh, Kayleigh Jean Peters, Brandon Tyler Polk, Meredith Laine Ware and Mollie Shay Warren.
Following a processional of the board of directors, faculty and staff, the graduating seniors entered to the traditional Pomp and Circumstance. Sandra Smith welcomed the guests and was followed by the invocation given by Leroy Riley of Lifesong Church.
Jade Alexis Briaud, salutatorian, addressed the audience saying, “This day isn’t just to celebrate us, but to celebrate the people who sacrificed their time and effort to get us to this point. We are the sons and daughters of farmers, doctors, policemen, immigrants and office workers. Their seeds of sacrifice have been sowed so that we can reap success. Our families support us — they are the people we didn’t choose, but wouldn’t trade for the world. Specifically, I would like to thank my parents for always pushing me to do my best, and still supporting me even when I don’t. I would like to thank my brother, Garrett, for setting a good example and giving me someone to one up, and I would like to thank my grandmother for teaching me what is means to be a strong woman.”
In closing Briaud said, “The next few years are going to be the best ones of our lives. We’re going to have a lot of fun, some of us may have a little too much fun. But as the great Ferris Bueller once said, ‘Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around occasionally, you could miss it.’ So, here’s to us, the Class of 2019, filled to the brim with dedication, determination, and the tenacity to achieve. Once a War Hawk, always a War Hawk.”
Jacob Lee Burttram, senior class president, presented the senior gift of money to Dawson Cole Sweat, junior class president, 2018-19.
Valedictorian Anne Garrett Carter opened her commencement address saying, “Welcome board of directors, faculty, family, friends and my fellow graduates of the class of 2019. I am honored to be speaking before you on this very special occasion. Today marks an important moment where we must forever leave the comfort and security of a place that has been a part of our lives for many years to embark on different paths out into the world. For some of us, 13 years ago, we were just beginning our time at Colleton Prep together. Others may have only been here for a few years, but no matter how long each of you has spent your time here, one thing is definite. Colleton Prep is our home.”
Carter closed her speech with, “We each have the capability of achieving greatness. The future is bright, so give everything you do your best effort, and I know you will all succeed. As Walt Disney said, ‘We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.’ So be curious in your life ahead and dare to strive for excellence. Thank you and congratulations class of 2019. We made it.”
The commencement address was delivered by Dr. Marco Cavazzoni, president of Lowcountry Aviation and chairman of Magnaghi Americas.
Cavazzoni specializes in transitioning organizations from an existing “current state” to a desired “future state,” from corporate strategy to execution with focus on business startup, turnaround and growth. His experience lies in establishing and operating multiple global businesses and supply chains to increase operational margins and market capture. He currently leads a fully integrated aviation business, Lowcountry Aviation Company, that provides Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulated charter services, repair station services, engineering services, aircraft management, aircraft storage and fuel services for the general and business aviation markets.
A professional engineer, Cavazzoni holds a doctorate in organizational leadership from Pepperdine University, a master’s degree in aerospace engineering from Concordia University, and a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Toronto. A former world-ranked swimmer for Canada and University of Toronto Sports Hall of Fame inductee, Marco currently serves as commissioner of District 6 for the South Carolina Aeronautics Commission.
The presentation of diplomas was handled by Heath Griffith, chairman of the Board of Directors, and was followed by the singing of the Colleton Preparatory Academy Alma Mater. The benediction was given by Leroy Riley before the Class of 2019 Recessional to Trumpet Tune by Purcell.