Suffield’s senior speaker series continued on February 27 and featured nine engaging presentations from members of the Class of 2017: Abou Diaby, Alex Clarke, Becca Collins, Marissa Flevotomos, Kristen Kertanis, Ameera Moumina, Kayla Rosenkranz, Sergey Morozov, and Morgan Islam.
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.
Speaking passionately about controversial issues highlighted in the recent election, Morgan Islam expressed her feelings about being Muslim in a divided nation. “I don’t expect you to understand how troubled I am by the results of this election,” she said, “but I do hope you will pause and think about my experiences before you completely forget them.” From Bronx, New York, Abou Diaby recalled a day when his brother was shot while attending a cookout in the park. “If I had lost my brother I would be a totally different person than the one telling you this story right now. Cherish one another and never take someone for granted,” he insisted. Alex Clarke’s video recognized faculty members Mr. and Mrs. Warren for having a positive influence on his life. Becca Collins shared pictures of her dog and best friend Sammy. Passionate about traveling, Marissa Flevotomos presented a video documenting her family’s road trip through Europe which included visits to the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Greece, and Italy. “Playing a sport has been an amazing experience that I will never forget,” said Kristen Kertanis as she recounted her experiences on JV basketball, “and I hope all of you take a chance and step out of your comfort zone at least once because it may be one of the best decisions you make.” Ameera Moumina spoke about misconceptions and judgement. “Everyone in this world deserves a chance to truly be normal,” she declared. “We should never allow misconceptions to build walls in between each other.” Kayla Rosenkranz shared a slide show of images she captured while at a camp in Burlington, Vermont, where she was taught the basics of photography. “Make every moment count,” concluded Sergey Morozov. Referring to the sudden loss of his grandfather, Sergey talked about the precious value of time. "Every minute may be your last one, so if you love someone don't wait."
The senior speaker series will resume on April 3.
View all chapel presentations here.