The Class of 2017 Speaker Series – Words from our Seniors

Suffield’s senior speaker series continued on February 13 and featured eight members of the Class of 2017: Brad Hawkins, Arseniy Dolgin, Sam Seo, Dat Vo, Eman Wong, Emerson Genovese, Brian Daddario, and Caleb Wurster.
The series is a new addition to the chapel program where all seniors deliver a speech, presentation, or performance to the Suffield Academy community. Headmaster Charlie Cahn said he hopes the program will serve as a formative experience for the seniors, an opportunity to strengthen community, and a way to continue providing engaging chapel programming. These talks will be supplemented by traditional chapel events including the Community Text speaker (Mark Shriver this year), the Alumni Leadership Day program, the Student Council Elections, and the Kent-Davis Speaking Competition during Commencement week.
Brad Hawkins began by discussing what it is like to come from Camden, New Jersey. Rated the most dangerous city in America, Brad talked about the “city that hope forgot” and how it taught him the strength to overcome adversity. Arseniy Dolgin offered advice on how to adjust to and prepare for jet lag when traveling. Emerson Genovese described how a haphazard childhood accident with a baseball bat helped save his father’s life. “I’ve learned to see silver linings in the most unusual places,” he explained. Sam Seo investigated why there is such a scarce number of last names in Korea and traced some of their origins. Dat Vo shared a video demonstrating his passion for powerlifting and Eman Wong performed a solo on his electric guitar. Reading an excerpt from President Ronald Reagan’s farewell address, Brian Daddario expressed his interest in the political climate of the United States and explained his role in leading the political philosophy club at Suffield. Recognizing the profound impact of being homeschooled as an adolescent, Caleb Wurster explained how his unique childhood experiences shaped him into who he is today. “In the end I am proud of how I was raised and who it has made me. It has led me to where I am and has paved the road for the rest of my life.”
The senior speaker series will resume on February 20.
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