The Pennington School formally opened its 181st academic year with Convocation ceremonies on Friday, September 7. Despite drizzle that turned to downpour, spirits were high under the tent on O'Hanlon Green. A brass quintet played as the students entered, by grade, followed by the academic procession of faculty and trustees.
The program began with an invocation from Chaplain Aaron R. Twitchell, followed by the singing of "The Star-Spangled Banner" by a cappella group InTouch (juniors Annelise Cornet, Gabriela Montero, Molly Nelson, and Jenna Solimon). After welcoming remarks from Peter J. Tucci '79, chair of the Board of Trustees, there were greetings from various School constituencies. Holly Jones, teacher of history and economics, represented the faculty; student speakers were Katherine Reim '19, president of the student government, and Francesca Pendus '23, representing the Middle School. Reim added a festive note to the proceedings: confetti!
Headmaster William S. Hawkey addressed the theme for this academic year: Make a Difference. He quoted words of Ernest Hemingway that the late Senator John McCain loved: "Today is only one day in all the days that will ever be. But what will happen in all the other days that ever come can depend on what you do today." Hawkey challenged the student body to find their own ways to make a difference.
To see a slideshow of photos from Convocation, please click here.