Senior Speakers

Senior Speakers

The 2022-2023 senior speaker series continued on January 30. It featured eight members of the Class of 2023: Miles Haight, Jaiden Johnson, Owen Moreira, Jason Ofcarcik, Natziri Martinez, Morgan Peterson, Michelle St. Jacques, and Tyler Wolkoff.

Miles Haight, a postgraduate from Charleston, South Carolina, spoke about the idea of unknowns. He said, “Throughout these few months here at Suffield, these mysteries or dilemmas that I call unknowns I’ve learned should be embraced. These changes along your path may scare you or take you out of your comfort zone but will ultimately benefit you as a whole.”

Jaiden Johnson, a three-year senior from New York, New York, shared a letter he wrote to his grandfather, who passed away in 2016. In the letter he said, “In the grand scheme of things, I am no one without you or anyone who supports me. You have instilled discipline in me since I was a child and although you are no longer here by my side, my brother and father have stepped up to the role. They are constantly pushing me to be my best self.”

Owen Moreira, a three-year senior from Grafton, Massachusetts, spoke about his strong relationship with his younger siblings, and how he created a survival guide for them for if they come to Suffield one day. His rules included “Don’t be afraid to embrace everything Suffield has to offer,” “I cannot emphasize this enough: establish a good relationship with Mr. Lynch,” and “Make sure all four years of high school you really give it your all in the classroom.”

Jason Ofcarcik, a postgraduate from Hampden, Massachusetts, shared some of the lessons he has learned from his favorite teacher and advisor, Mr. Godin. He said, “One of the biggest lessons that he’s taught me is to keep working hard. He has not only told me this but has demonstrated it himself... Another lesson Mr. Godin has taught me is that no one is perfect... I hope all of us today can reflect on what Mr. Godin has done for the school and how he has made it a better place. And we can each hope to be a little more like him.”

Natziri Martinez, a four-year senior from Revere, Massachusetts, talked about some of her core Suffield memories, concluding by saying, “As the end nears, we tend to grow closer to one another, recalling the past. It’s only natural. So despite all that has happened, these are the memories and the moments I will choose to take with me. The way I will choose to remember all of you and Suffield. The year is not over yet so I hope we can all continue to spend the most of it together.”

Morgan Peterson, a first-year senior from Nassau, Bahamas, shared her pyramid of experiences so far at Suffield, starting at the bottom—trying to get into the wrong dorm her first week of school—and ending at her favorite part of her daily routine: “I wake up to see the group of girls that has made my experience at Suffield feel like home. Whether it’s guessing which day student may show up to breakfast, cramming in a last-minute assignment, or simply sitting in silence munching on chocolate chip muffins, it is what I look forward to every single night before I go to bed.”

Michelle St. Jacques, a four-year senior from Southwick, Massachusetts, talked about her mom and their many shared qualities. She said, “We get overwhelmed easily, stressing ourselves out over the smallest things and worrying about something that just doesn’t matter. We like to be organized and put-together but hate when people get in our way. Despite our shared faults, she is the most kind, selfless, caring, and forgiving person I know.”

Tyler Wolkoff, a four-year senior from Manhattan, New York, spoke fondly about his family members and how important they are to him. He said, “When I sat down to write this chapel speech I couldn't quite decide what to write on... But then I thought of what is most important to me: My family. I could not ask for a better family. They are all so supportive in everything that I do and the bonds that we all have could never be broken.”

The senior speaker series is a valuable Suffield Academy tradition and capstone part of the Leadership Program. It is a weekly highlight in our community.

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