7.5.18 ‒7.17.18 ‒ vol. 14

2018 Commencement Address

by PMHS Principal Jeannine Clark

PMHS Principal Jeannine Clark


Good Morning and welcome. Before we begin , I want to thank Mr. Andrew Von Bochove and our talented PMHS band, as well as Lorena Maggiore for their wonderful performances.


One of the most rewarding and bittersweet moments in the life of any Principal is to stand before a graduating class of over two hundred students and, in her heart, know that she is both applauding and saying farewell to a class of young men and women who personify the best, most promising qualities of the youth of today.


To a person, the members of the Class of 2018 are intelligent, creative, hard working,  resourceful, respectful and loyal to their school, their community and always to each other.


So, on behalf of your friends, your peers, the administration, the faculty and staff of Pelham Memorial High School, the Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Champ, and her Central Administration and the members of the Pelham Board of Education, I congratulate the seniors of the Class of 2018.


I must also acknowledge the dedication of your parents. Not only for providing this wonderful tent, but also for the unconditional love, support and perseverance that helped get each and every one of you to this happy and important day. And for that, I think it most appropriate that you thank and acknowledge your parents with a round of applause.


Along with our graduating class are many former students who’ve graduated from Pelham Memorial High School. And I’m sure today’s ceremony brings back many memories for them. I’d like all of these former PMHS Senior Class members to please stand.


One of the central strengths of this Senior class is your phenomenal creativity and talent. Throughout your four years I have seen you win many well-deserved accolades as editors of our newspaper, yearbook and theater arts, along with the artwork you showcased at local galleries.


For me and for so many others, the total sum of your considerable talents were clearly on display at the Senior Talent Show earlier this year. In my fourteen years as Principal, it was the most imaginative show I have seen. Your skits were ingenious and insightful. And they gave the adults who attended a thoughtful, keen and incisive snapshot of your lives.


The inspiration for your Talent Show was the still-popular sitcom Friends, and in so many ways, it epitomizes the caring, supportive and close-knit nature of this class. Your  successful teamwork was also evident in this year’s Olympics as well as last year’s stunning win as Juniors.


Your teamwork also came across at many other athletic challenges. This year alone senior athletes won section and league championships in several sports including an astounding, unprecedented lacrosse season. And many school records were broken by the athletes in this class.


Your class is one of the most self-confident classes this school has seen. A record number of you made your college decisions in the fall with almost 97 % of your class will soon continue on to institutions of higher learning from coast to coast as well as Canada, Europe and China. Others in your class will soon apply their talents and skills to opportunities in the work force. Still others will apply their talents, loyalty and teamwork know-how to service in our armed forces. I’d like these armed service-bound seniors to now stand. Please join me in thanking them for their commitment to our nation.


The exceptional young women and men in your class have earned national and international awards in Science Research, competed at the state and national level in Forensic Speech and many of you have become quite the linguists based on the outstanding results on your National World Language exams.


This capable class also consists of seniors who have excelled in competitive horseback riding, competitive ice skating and primetime television stardom. The future shines brightly for all of you as you now prepare to pursue your passions. This class contains a future astrophysicist, a bio-engineer, college athletes and accomplished musicians. Several of you will use your math skills to improve statistical analysis of baseball and proudly, several will be the first in their families to attend college.


Over the past four years you have celebrated each other’s successes and supported each other in times of adversity. And in the process you have together developed the everlasting bonds of trust, respect and camaraderie. As Eleanor Roosevelt so aptly expressed it, “Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart.”


My memory of the Class of 2018 will always remain one of admiration, appreciation and pride. It is to each of you that I say congratulations and thank you, and wish you the best of luck in everything that now awaits you in all the years to come.




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