Graduation Exercises of the Class of 2019
At 4 p.m. sharp, June 12, 484 members of the Class of 2019 stepped onto the field to capstone their four years at NFA as the chords of "Pomp and Circumstance" were performed by the NFA Concert Band. The graduates followed Corporators and honored guests, including 93 members of the 50th Reunion Class of 1969, who were escorted to the dais by student marshals Juliana Drainville and Samantha Tracey. The ceremony was the 161st Graduation Commencement in the Academy's history.
Following the National Anthem and Hymn Dundee, Ivy Orator Sarah Carter and Class Speaker Ashley Lawton addressed their classmates.
“There is no challenge or problem we cannot face,” Carter said in her oration. “NFA has provided us the tools. NFA has prepared us for a sophisticated world that requires sophisticated minds and people, and we, the Class of 2019, are up to the task of meeting the world where it is and bringing it to where it needs to be.”
Lawton spoke of the triumphs and obstacles her classmates will face on the road that is life. “Remember, through it all, there is no point to a road if you have no destination. Your destination is your goal, your dream, your hope,” she said. “Your destination drives you to endure the difficult times; it drives you to strive for better, even when times are good. Always keep your destination in mind. Never settle for anything less than your goal.”
Representing the 50th Reunion Class of 1969, Jerry Grabarek encouraged graduates to be active participants in the changing world, and do their part to make it a better place. “Pitch in and do your part to make the world a more livable place,” he said. “Decisions will need to be made; try to be part of the solution.”
Following the delivery of the class gift by Brooke Rondeau to Atty. Sarette Williams, retiring Bradlaw House Administrative Assistant Nancee Martin presented the first diploma. All 485 students were honored and celebrated as they became NFA’s newest alumni.
View a recording of the live broadcast, the entire program, and speeches here.