As the one hundred and seven members of our Class of 2022 cross the stage, receive our coveted diplomas, and look into the sea of friends, family, and teachers in support of us, we will all reflect on our Haverford experiences and the influence that this place and these people have had on our lives. From the teachers and directors who guided us through virtual learning to the administrators who helped the school re-open, we will forever be grateful.
After several years of disruption, our class is thankful for the opportunity to experience a “normal” last four months of our Sixth Form year. We enjoyed watching Something Rotten in a packed Centennial Hall, cheering on our spring sports teams in their quest for championships, and sliding down the slip and slide on a beautiful Sixth Form beach day.
There were so many people integral to our class, headlined by our Form Dean Ms. Brooke Kenna, who supported each of us through the past four years and watched us grow as a class.
“Having taught everybody freshman year, and then bookending senior year, it’s just been really cool,” Ms. Kenna said. “You have a freshman sort-of goofiness and immaturity here and there; but I’ve had the unique experience of teaching a lot of people freshman year, becoming form dean sophomore year, and then teaching and being a form dean for seniors. It’s just been really awesome to watch you guys grow up and come into your personalities and watch the beginning of your Haverford journey to now, as your time comes to an end.”
In addition to Ms. Kenna’s leadership, Head of School Mr. Tyler Casertano guided the Sixth Form through trials and tribulations. But he appreciates how he could look to the grade for direction in his first year here.
“This class will always have a special place in my heart. I will miss the guidance that I get from you all. I’m confident that the class of 2023 can step into that, but I’ve really come to lean on so many of you guys and have asked a lot of you at different times: I’ve turned to you all a lot to understand this place, and you all have always been there to support me and steer me through year one.”
Sixth Former and Student Body President Mitav Nayak reflected on the class’s relationship with Mr. Casertano.
“Because it was Mr. Casertano’s first year, I think our class formed a special relationship with him,” Nayak said. “I personally came to see him as a mentor, and I know that a lot of students in our grade feel the same way. Our class looked to him for support and guidance, and his leadership was a major reason why this year was so great.”
When talking to our classmates and reflecting on our time together, the theme that stands out most is the relationships amongst the students in our class. For Sixth Form student council representative Jahmon Silver, these relationships helped him grow as an individual.
“I love my class. I consider everyone in my class to be my brother. We had a hard journey and we got through it together. The impact of my time at Haverford has made me the man I am today. It has shown me the values of being a gentleman and how it affects everyone around you,” Silver said.
Sixth Form student council representative Teddy Malone echoed Silver’s sentiment, emphasizing the brotherhood.
“Haverford was truly life changing for me. It is really a brotherhood, and the relationships I built while here have been amazing,” Malone said.
While the long-lasting relationships comprise an essential part of the brotherhood, we also value the small but unforgettable memories that everyone will remember.
“As much as I enjoyed the big EA Day, I remember feeling really excited when we could do a faculty-student basketball game again—our masks could come off and it was so cool to see the seniors cheering and having a blast,” Ms. Kenna said. “As much fun as those big things were, it was nice to have those little moments: I always have kids in my classroom, which I’m really flattered about, and getting to know a kid whom I never talked to before and just stopped. Just sharing more of a personal connection. Those will always be my favorite moments because they just brought everything together.”
In Mr. Casertano’s eyes, his year’s virtue of the year, “support,” perfectly represented the characteristics of the Class of 2022.
“In the moments of individual success or achievement that happened over the course of the year—reflections, athletic events, arts performances, and academic achievements—there was always a huge group of your classmates there to celebrate. You could tell that the individuals were always feeding off the energy of the group and the group was feeding off of the energy of the individual,” Mr. Casertano said. “And even in moments where it wasn’t a moment of success, the group was always there to pick the person up. It always felt like your class was there for each other, to celebrate each other, to support each other, to care for each other. While there were plenty of examples of individual accomplishments this year, those accomplishments were driven by the collective support and participation of the class.”
When reflecting on the school year in its entirety, there was one event that stood out above all others for Malone, Nayak, and Silver: EA Day.
“My best memory at Haverford has been every EA Day and being able to be a part of something so big,” Silver said. “Win or lose, it’s a great atmosphere and you feel like you’re on top of the world.”
“This year’s EA Day was one of those moments where everyone in the school came together to support each other and reach our common goal of bringing home the sweater,” Nayak said. “Everyone on the field, in the pool, and in the stands had a role to play. It was a moment that will stick with me for the rest of my life.”
In their own seasons, playing on the field was also exhilarating.
“My favorite memories at Haverford have been the support at events, whether that’s athletic games or academic events,” Malone said. “My favorite memory was playing in front of my classmates during the last few lacrosse games at the end of the season. We got so many kids there and it was truly special to share that moment with everyone.”
To the Class of 2022: it’s been a pleasure to share Wilson Hall, the student-section bleachers, and the Centennial Hall rows with every one of you. We wish you nothing but the best in your future endeavors, and we can’t wait until we meet back here again during a reunion and both reflect on these years and all the amazing things we’ve done since. This isn’t goodbye, just “so long” for a while.