Davidson Day School celebrated the graduation of 33 students at the May 24 commencement.
Dr. Ian Baucom, Buckner W. Clay Dean of Arts and Sciences at the University of Virginia, was the commencement speaker, recognizing the graduates’ efforts and wishing them well. He also challenged students to live their personal values as they go forward and align them to democratic ideals in order to sustain a prosperous and free nation, according to graduation information provided by the school.
Other featured speakers were salutatorian Maisie Rees, who discussed the difference between privilege and entitlement, and valedictorian Matthew Hines, who asked that his fellow graduates remember the individual and small group experiences from their primary school years rather than generalize their feelings about their entire time spent on campus, the school’s statement reads.
Rees was awarded the Karen Wolter Award for Student Excellence. Jordan Graham earned the Head of School’s Award.
In addition to the degrees and awards, another special presentation took place.
Harrison Nichols, who was a student at Davidson Day before dying from Stage IV Neuroblastoma at 8 years old, would have graduated with the Class of 2018. He was remembered by Graham, the student body president, earlier in the week at the senior dinner. During the commencement ceremony, the school leaders also presented Logan Brady, Harrison’s cousin and a fellow member of the Class of 2018, and the Nichols family an honorary degree for him.
Of the graduates, 85 percent of the seniors were admitted into one of their first choice colleges, according to school information. In the Class of 2018, 42 percent will be attending in-state schools, and 58 percent will be attending schools out of state, all encompassing 24 different institutions.