Senior Speakers

The 2022-2023 senior speaker series began on September 26. It featured eight members of the Class of 2023: Alex Cieplinski, Olivia Dufresne-Achatz, Hope Clark, Juana Diez Londoño, Kira McCreesh, Biff Tran, Joseph Muslu, and Harry Yi.

Alex Cieplinski, a four-year senior from Westfield, Massachusetts, and Olivia Dufresne-Achatz, a four-year senior from Suffield, Connecticut, did their chapel speech together, talking about the challenges of going first, as well as mentioning the people who have helped them get to where they are today. Alex advised listeners to “take in what you have left of your time at Suffield, and don’t dread your chapel speech.” Olivia added, “There are so many people who have made a huge impact on our time here at Suffield and we urge you to surround yourself with people who make you feel the same.”

Hope Clark, a four-year senior from Agawam, Massachusetts, talked about her relationship with her family and how it has shaped her, sharing, “When I think about who I am, of course, I think about the people I love and the qualities they have. During my time at Suffield, I know I have grown into a more confident and authentic version of myself.”

Juana Diez Londoño, a four-year senior from Medellin, Colombia, spoke about overcoming and managing the feeling of uncertainty, saying, “When uncertainty peeks its head out at you later today, don't shy away from it, don't let it scare you. Instead, wait and listen to what it has to say; it will tell you that nothing is set in stone and because of that, you have the freedom to become the best version of yourself.”

Kira McCreesh, a four-year senior from Southport, Connecticut, talked about each of her family's six dogs, saying, “Throughout my life I have had seven dogs. Suffield has given me amazing experiences and as hard as it is to leave my dogs every year, I always go home knowing that we will be getting another one soon.”

Biff Tran, a four-year senior from Westchester, New York, shared her journey of becoming a more confident version of herself, saying, “I’ve come a long way since freshman me moved into her first dorm room, wondering if people were going to like her. But the greater outcome I got from this experience was learning to like myself first. Although many days I still struggle with my mind and body, I’m proud of how far I’ve come.”

Joseph Muslu, a four-year senior from Longmeadow, Massachusetts, spoke about the positives and the challenges he has experienced while playing sports at Suffield, saying about water polo, “The feeling of refreshment you get from leaving the pool and taking a warm shower right after is unparalleled and it is a great workout that leaves you feeling cleansed,” and about skiing, “As a casual skier, I did not know that there was a world of difference between my ‘vintage skis’ with wood peeling off and edges that were long gone and the competitive racing skis that could cut through the mountain with ease.”

Harry Yi, a four-year senior from Guangzhou, China, spoke about how it is important to find things that you enjoy in all the opportunities Suffield has to offer. He said, “You can try as many things as you want here at Suffield, but you need to find out that thing you actually like.... If you find that, four years at Suffield will be very happy and very fast for you.”

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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