Opening remarks given by Head of School, Andrew Menke: 

As the 2022-23 school year draws to a close, I want to take a moment to reflect—for one of the last times—on our theme of joy in the journey. Now I would guess, as much as I love this year’s theme, that our focus and messaging around the theme can become wearisome.

“Ah, Mr. Menke…another talk about joy in the journey, as I battled through APs and final exams that are just days away, I am not sure I am finding joy  in the journey” 

I want to acknowledge that while we want you to en-joy your learning journey here and experience many uplifting moments, joy need not always be associated with happiness and ease. Joy can come in many forms and especially in the delight we find in engaging in “work” that is demanding, challenging, and stretches our capacity and comfort. 

One of the elements of student culture here at Waterford that we most appreciate—despite challenges—is the intrinsic motivation that you demonstrate each day. You are joyfully on a journey of intellectual growth because you possess an internal drive and deep motivation to explore, to create and to grow! 

In every phase of our lives, there is a great deal of pressure to pursue outcomes, to think about the return on investment (ROI) that comes with persistent, sustained, devoted effort. And while the destination is important, it is the journey that is so satisfying, the notion of committing so fully that you nearly “lose” yourself in the effort. And in the pursuit, and in the process, you find the profound satisfaction that comes from so completely giving yourself to the task. Be it writing a research paper and becoming engrossed in the subject because you’ve come to know it  and love it. Or learning as Madeline Cassell did prior to last Thursday night’s choral concert, a high-level vocal piece that took skill, courage, self-confidence and, I would imagine, countless hours of practice. 

While a grade immediately awaits the research paper and applause for the vocal solo, it is the process, the disciplined practice of investing so fully in the journey of learning that is so vital to a lifetime love of learning. That internal drive to be always and ever curious about your world. 

This is what joy in the journey is all about, the desire in here <point to heart and gut> to pursue learning because it nourishes and sustains and creates meaning fulfillment and purpose in our lives.

Your drive, to stretch, to learn, to be ever better and lean into the at times uncomfortable risk to extend yourself in service to broadening and deepening an experience —this is what it is to be a joyful liberal arts learner, to poke and prod at the edges of your capacity and then extend beyond perhaps what you thought possible to seek the transcendent experience of seeking truth and wisdom in your studies. 

While we have a few more days ahead, the 2022-23 school year has truly been joyful. WE are inspired by all of you who bring your best each day embracing our world-class aspirations and committing so fully to your growth, in and out of the classroom. Remain curious, passionate and joyful about your learning. As these traits will serve you so well in college and for the rest of your lives. Thank you, each of you, for a great year!

Opening remarks given by Class XII Dean, Dr. MaryAnn Pope: 

I am so happy to be here to celebrate the Class of 2023.

To quote Iron man, “Part of the Journey is the end.”  I stand here looking at the Class of 2023 joining you at the end of your journey here at Waterford. There are still two weeks to go, but those days will be full of lasts. You are currently in your last full week of Waterford. You will soon attend your last assembly, eat your last lunch on campus, wear your uniform for one last time, take your last final, have your last class, leave campus for the last time as students…there will be many last moments in these two weeks ahead. It is bittersweet.

When I think of the Class of 2023, the words that come to my mind are resilience, determination, and strength. I have seen how resilient you all have been through the struggles of learning in a once in a century global pandemic. Through it all, you had an unrelenting determination to learn and grow, to make the most of your upper school years through hybrid learning and masks. I see the strength in you that pulled you through these difficult times. I am so proud of each and every one of you.

I want you to know that I see you. I see all of you. I see you on the field giving your all to your favorite sport, I see you in your performances with skill and talent that amazes me. I see you in your artwork masterfully portraying your unique experiences and world views. I see you in your hard work and dedication to learning. I know some of you never miss a deadline while others are more prone to procrastination, but buckle down and put in the hard work and come through at the end.  

I know I tend to watch on the sidelines that you may not realize that I am even there, but I am. I am always watching, and hoping that I intervene when you need me to.

You may not be perfect. There are a few things that slightly frustrate me. There are about 20 of you that will never complete my surveys without me begging you to do it at least three times. You seem to believe that there is some unspoken law of physics that only allows 50 % of you in assembly at all times, and there is a certain number of you that believe that once you are accepted to college, you have aged out of wearing a uniform. Despite these small grievances, I have loved every moment of being your class dean for the past three years.

You inspire me, you amaze me, you give me hope. While I am sad to see you graduate, I am so excited to see what you will become. Class of 2023, I have the utmost confidence that each and every one of you will change this world for the better.

Thank you for everything.  It has been a great honor and privilege to serve as your dean. Thank You!


Remarks shared by Ryan Judd, Associate Dean of Students for Student Life:  

I want everyone to stop for 5 seconds, and without saying anything out loud, think of a historical leader who has inspired you. It can be a politician, a monarch, a general, an activist, a poet, an artist, an athlete, an explorer, a musician or a spiritual leader.

Now, take a moment to think of someone who you know personally, who you view as a leader, who has inspired you. It can be anyone in your life, who has encouraged, uplifted, or motivated you to be better.

I am estimating that there are about 300 people in this room, and each of you should be thinking of 2 different people. It is my guess that if we were to get out a whiteboard, and write down the names of all of the different leaders that have inspired people in this room our list would likely include about 400 unique names!

It would be fun to read through that list, and see who inspires you all and why, but the point I want to make today is that there is no one cookie cutter answer for what makes a good leader. Our list of 400 leaders would likely include people from all sorts of backgrounds, with a myriad of different personality traits, experiences and outlooks on life. 

Some of the leaders that you might have thought of are…..

Malala Yousafzai – The courageous and resilient activist for Women’s Education Pakistan, who did not let a bullet wound stop her from speaking out for equal opportunity. Or Winston Churchill – The gruff ‘ol bulldog, whose clever wit and stubborn resilience, gave courage to Britain as they withstood Nazi advances. Or Amelia Earhardt, the intrepid explorer, who possessed an undeniable spirit of adventure and charismatic charm, who inspired a generation of women to follow their dreams. Or, one of my favorites, John Wooden, whose patient, kind and humble demeanor helped him become one of the greatest basketball coaches of all time! Or some of you may have even imagined the ferocious William Wallace. Who, even though I understand the film Braveheart to be quite historically inaccurate, inspired many with his wild, unconquerable, warrior king leadership. Those are just 5 potential examples, and the personality differences between them are clear. 

The point is, there is no blueprint for what a leader has to be like, look like, or act like. Leaders can come in an infinite variety of personalities and characteristics. BUT I believe that good leaders all share the common traits of being passionate, committed, caring and genuine to themselves.

This year’s student government leaders have also come in a wide variety of personalities. Some are outspoken, some are soft spoken. Some are deliberate and calculated and others are spontaneous go-getters. Some of them were taking quiet strolls through the aquarium at prom, while others were in the center of the mosh pit! Some are artists, some are academics, some are athletes, some are musicians, some are dancers and some of them are not dancers! Their variety has been their strength, and has allowed them to be a positive voice for a wide spectrum of the student body. And while they all have their own fantastically unique personalities, they have each also shown the ability to be passionate, committed, caring and genuine, which are the hallmarks of great leaders. 

I would like to give a thank you and then a warm applause of gratitude to the following students.

Dalloway S. ’26
Ciel P. ’26
Marlo H. ’26
Kandi J. ’25
Declan D. ’25
Jack K. ’25
Ethan B. ’24
Nathan K. ’24

Gia W. ’24
Zada S. ’24
Delaney H. ’23
Mia S. ’23
Gavin R. ’23
Diesel K. ’23
Carolyn M. ’23
Spencer C. ’23

We appreciate all of the hard work you have put into this school year, and thank you for all that you have done to bring joy to our school in your own unique way.


Remarks shared by Nancy Nebeker, Dean of Students: 

The Community Builder award acknowledges in its very title that a community, in this case a school community, doesn’t spontaneously come into existence.  It is built bit by bit, day in and day out by the willing contributions of those it serves.  This year’s award winners have made our community better through the goodness of their lives and we are happy to acknowledge their contributions today..

FRESHMAN – Class of 2026

Raneem A. 
Raneem loves to learn about others and in turn loves to share what matters to her. Her wonderful sense of humor puts everyone at ease. Raneem greets everyone in her path with a genuine smile and a listening ear.  She takes  the initiative to help make a situation better – wherever she is found.

Isaac M. 
The name Isaac means “one who laughs or rejoices”.  As it turns out, his parents named him well.  Isaac has established a routine of carrying a football around with him at school every day, not because he is preparing to be an NFL Linebacker, but because he uses the ball as a tool to include and connect with others. Those who know him know that Isaac can always be counted on to be kind.

SOPHOMORES – Class of 2025

 Kaycee K. 
Kaycee brings a positive attitude to every Waterford activity she is involved in.  She can always be counted on to be kind and considerate of her classmates.  She’s an excellent communicator who quietly gets things done.  Her peers and teachers know that they can always rely on Kaycee.

Scott O. 
Helping everyone at Waterford feel like they belong seems to come naturally to Scott.   He looks out for those who need support and cheerfully helps in any way he can.  In fact, his good cheer seems to be contagious. Scott genuinely cares about his classmates and wants to help them have a good day, every day.

JUNIORS – Class of 2024

Tyler A.
Tyler is a kind and caring student who brings treats to Morning Meeting even when it isn’t his assigned week. Tyler never complains. He seeks the reasons behind outcomes without ever resorting to negativity.  While quiet overall, Tyler will talk to anyone and everyone in his class in ways that affirm them as valued peers.

Anika M.
Anika is always inclusive to her peers in all settings.  That inclusive approach was seen in important ways as she mentored younger players on her soccer team.  She was an amazing role model for each of them.  Anika’s love of Waterford is shown every day in her care for the wellbeing of her classmates.  Her presence makes a difference.

SENIORS – Class of 2023

Boone Stauffer
Boone is caring, honest, and always willing to lend a helping hand, no matter the task. He has a great sense of humor and the ability to make others around him laugh and feel at ease. Boone has shown strong leadership skills on and off the athletic field – particularly mentoring younger athletes who are enamored by his skills and drawn to his goodness.

Olivia Wood
Olivia is a great lover of the arts and her academic pursuits and she contributed thoughtfully to her community of artists, dancers and scholars. She also cares about the Waterford community as a whole and has worked quietly to make a lasting difference on our campus.  Olivia is energetic, enthusiastic, and brings joy everywhere she goes.


The Cum Laude Society is a century-old organization dedicated to the goal of recognizing and honoring true academic excellence. Its member institutions include the very finest independent schools in the country and around the world. 

Every Cum Laude school may admit a fraction of its graduating class into the Society, and may establish the criteria for admission as it sees fit. Waterford has chosen to identify induction into the Cum Laude Society as the highest academic honor its students can earn. To be chosen for Cum Laude Society honors, students must have established remarkable records of broad, deep, sustained, first-rate achievement across all program areas in the Upper School.

The 2023 Waterford Cum Laude scholars were officially inducted into the Society at a dinner with their parents earlier in the spring, but here at this Awards Assembly we want to recognize them again: 

Ryan Bookman
Spencer Collins
Garrison Heuston
Delaney Huefner
Lauren Lindsay

Kenna Macdonald
Mathew Nelson
Julia Ostrander
Anderson Pan
Gavin Richardson

Ethan Romer
Sally Scofield
Tony Wang
Steven Whitney



From day one, Kenna impressed us with her ability to seek beyond the obvious, digging deep into highly conceptual and metaphorical ideas. We noticed her hunger for knowledge and her ability to ask questions, seeking out answers from those around her. She does not have to be told what to do, for generating ideas comes naturally to Kenna. This is what she thrives on.

Over the course of the past two years, Kenna’s artwork has become more and more visually dynamic and technically strong. This transformation has come through countless hours of hard work—work that she seems to love. Kenna is the embodiment of vehemence. Her love for learning never ceases. 

Creativity involves making interesting connections—Kenna connected ideas about sound waves, ripple effects in water and human communication—she did this through the mediums of clay, string, found objects, and through texture, pattern, color and form. Her work titled The Wave Effect, was chosen to be part of the Springville Museum high school art exhibit.  

Kenna will no doubt make positive waves in all of her future endeavors. Congratulations Kenna on receiving the Visual Art Department Award.


Remarks shared by Abby Ross, Computer Science Department Chair:

Marta has taken and excelled in many Computer Science courses during her time here at Waterford. Her first upper school course was Intro to Java in Class 9 that set her up well for AP Computer Science in Class 11. As a student, Marta knows how to ask thoughtful questions, utilize sophisticated analytical tools, and can learn quickly. She knows how to solve problems with complex algorithms and think critically, while her communication ability helps her to effectively and adeptly convey her findings on paper and in presentation. 

Marta has been very valuable to AP Computer Science this year as a TA. Learning a computer language is much like any other language, and having fluent speakers to learn from is invaluable. She has shown her great competency with code by clearly and simply helping students in the class with their questions. She has also created useful and illuminating presentations that teach students in the class complex computer science concepts.  Marta will continue to pursue her studies in Computer Science in the Netherlands next year.

`The Computer Science department is grateful for Marta’s contributions to the curriculum and for her kindness and helpfulness in the APCS classroom this year. Congratulations, Marta!


Remarks shared by Annie Semans, Dance Department Chair:

Our Dance Department prize goes to Madeline Cassell, for all of the hard work, dedication, passion, sweat and laughter that you have brought with you to the Dance Department. Thank you for showing what it means to be an artist, for Zooming in when no one else did, for being excited to try new things, for being willing to play, and for putting in the time and effort over and over again. Thank you for bringing your roles to life; from the “Ringleader” in Carnival  of the Animals, to the “Cat in the Hat” in How the Grinch Stole Christmas, to “Prayer” in Coppelia, to “Sugar Plum Fairy” in The Nutcracker,  and to “Odile” in Swan Lake, just to name a few. Thank you for sharing your power and presence with us on stage and off and we wish you all the best in your future endeavors.


“To dance is to be out of yourself. Larger, more beautiful, more powerful. This is power, it is glory on earth and it is yours for the taking.”  — Agnes De Mille


Remarks shared by Dr. Matt Davis, English Department Chair:

The winner of the 2022–23 English Department Prize is Sonya Baber. Since I met Sonya when she was in the 7th grade, her love of literature and her voracious appetite for books have been clear. She is a brilliant critic and an incisive writer of analytical explorations of texts, and what stands out to me most about her interest in English is just how important literary art is to her. It’s a passion that she lives every day, and it’s inspiring, especially in someone so young. She has high demands for herself and for the world around her, and she sees in literature—I think—opportunities to make the world better, as well as the ways that we as a species have wrestled with the consequences when the world fails us. Sonya is a critical thinker without being cynical, and the joy she finds in the written word reflects a life lived with intention and with a love of beauty. She is an accomplished creative writer with a distinct voice, and she draws on classical allusions to produce her own take on timeless themes. Sonya is already an accomplished student of English, and we are excited to see where new adventures in Rome will take her love of the written word. Congratulations, Sonya!


Remarks shared by Jason LaBau, History Department Chair:  

Based on the comments from my colleagues, it has been my great misfortune not to have taught Will. Here is a sampling of how they described Will:

Will “knows more about any major military conflict than … anyone. Probably more than the professors he’ll have in college.”

“Will frequently adds details and teaches the class about events, people, etc.” 

“The connections [Will] is able to make based on his abundant knowledge is impressive.”

“I think if you asked any student who knows the most history…they would say Will.”

Will is “also an incredibly insightful thinker, who cares deeply about the perspectives and experiences of marginalized people.”

Will “is kind, compassionate and believes in justice for those who are seen as ‘other.’ … [That] is what makes him not just a student of history but also a citizen and advocate.”

Will “is, by far, the most passionate young historian I have ever met and I am continually impressed by how he seeks out opportunities to learn more.”

And so, on behalf of a grateful History Department, thank you, Will Mortenson, for your contributions to our discipline, now and in the future.


Remarks shared by Tom Brennon, Math Department Chair:

Throughout his years as a student, Matthew excelled in each of his math classes from Pre-algebra to doubling up his senior year with both AP Statistics and BC Calculus.  He not only exhibited an amazing competency for the subject, Matthew showed an acute ardor for learning mathematics and exploring its underlying patterns, both theoretical and practical.  He demonstrated a remarkable mastery of the small details and an extraordinary ability to connect the big ideas. Hexaflexagons in grade eight and polar graphs, p-series and p-values as a senior ignited both passion and curiosity for him as did many other mathematical topics. His unbridled enthusiasm lit up each class he attended and sparked classroom discussion. As this year’s theme is “joy in the journey,” it was serendipitous that such a joyful mathematician was among the senior class to receive this award.


Remarks shared by Kathy Morris, Music Department Chair:

Elyse Larsen has been an invaluable, dedicated member of the choral music program throughout her years at the Waterford School. A four-year member of the Troubadours, Elyse also sang with the Chamber Singers during all four years of her Upper School career. Elyse chose to enroll in both choral ensembles because of her passion for singing and because of her genuine desire to support the musical growth of her peers. She loves to see others succeed, and her work in the music program has been aimed consistently toward supporting her fellow musicians. Elyse also loves the musical learning process. She is known as the singer who will shake her clenched fists and squeal with giddy excitement when the choir achieves success—even during the Troubadours warm-up at 8:30 in the morning. She has developed her vocal technique through many hours of practice. A coloratura soprano, Elyse brought a packed concert hall to tears this December at the Vespers concert as she sang O Holy Night in the darkness, surrounded by flickering candles. Elyse brings unguarded passion and emotion to her music making. She has had a profound impact on our music program through her energy, dedication, and commitment to excellence.


Remarks shared by Craig Morris, Athletic Director

On behalf of the Athletics Department at the Waterford School, I am thrilled to present this year’s senior athletic award to Carson Reynolds.

This year’s recipient has demonstrated outstanding qualities both on and off the playing field. Carson is a true multi-sport athlete.  Carson excelled at the Varsity level in both golf and basketball. Carson was a valuable member and a tough competitor on the basketball court. He was willing to take on tough defensive assignments, developed into a consistent scorer and led his team in rebounding this year.

While Carson’s basketball contributions are impressive, Golf is where his true passion and talent lies. Carson was  a Varsity contributor on the Golf team all four years.  After  his freshman year where he showed some raw talent and promise—he simply set his mind to dive fully into becoming a great golfer.  His constant efforts and steady improvement each year lead him to an Individual State Golf Title this year.  

Carson is a true Raven at heart and his support for Waterford athletics as a whole has played an important role in helping lead our community in support of all our raven teams. We will miss Carson on the court, and the golf course wearing Waterford colors, as well as on the sidelines cheering on his classmates. 

Congratulations Carson—you have made a lasting impact on the Waterford Athletics program over the past four years and we wish you all the best in what lies ahead. 


Remarks shared by James Harris, Science Department Chair:

On behalf of the Science Department Faculty, I am very pleased to present the 2023 Department Award to Avery Kelly.

As fellow-enthusiasts of science, we commend, and thank, Avery.

For building a fantastic bird list, while holed up in Big Cottonwood Canyon, during the remotest time of Covid.

For celebrating marine invertebrate beauty through ceramic art.

For teaching visitors of all ages in the Nature Lab, and classifying and organizing 368 teaching specimens, all while fighting the crafty dermestid beetle.

For seeing challenges as opportunities, that have creative solutions. 

Why wouldn’t we put a musk-ox in the dining hall freezer?

For asking questions that make adults think.

For reminding us of the importance of resource stewardship, and why it should be expressed in the new science building.

For treasuring the beauty of our natural world, and its fragility.

For sharing enthusiasm, for all that really matters.

Avery, you inspire us with your curiosity and care.

We are thrilled that you seek more learning in science.

Our world will be better for it.


Remarks shared by Javen Tanner, Theater Department Chair:

The 2023 Theater Department Award goes to Emma Stout. While still in Middle School, Emma made us all take notice when she commanded the stage as Prospero in Shakespeare’s The Tempest. Since then, she has appeared in eleven more productions. And it doesn’t matter if her character repeats only two words throughout the entire play, as in Lady Windermere’s Fan, or if her character is the central heroine of the play, as in Romeo and Juliet, Emma makes us remember her. She is as unafraid of the most over the top comedy as she is of the deepest tragedy. Emma will go where the character needs her to, and she’ll take the audience with her. From Shakespeare to Chekhov, from Euripides to Stoppard, Emma leaves Waterford with a range of acting experience more robust than most college graduates. But perhaps more important than all of that is her love of the work, and her love of the people with whom she works. Emma will begin training at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts this fall, and we will miss her very much. Congratulations, Emma.


Remarks shared by Tim Stout, World Languages Department Chair:

The 2023 World Languages Department Award is presented to not one, but two exceptional students: Annabelle Qian and Tony Wang. I will briefly outline their exceptional achievements, contributions, and extra-mile efforts that have made this a year unlike any we’ve ever seen, or will likely ever see again. 

First, excellence in the classroom: 

  • Annabelle and Tony have not only earned the seal of biliteracy, but the seal of tri-literacy, Annabelle in English, Chinese, and French and Tony in English, Chinese, and Spanish. 

Second, contribution outside the classroom 

  • Annabelle and Tony have both distinguished themselves in service to others outside the classroom, Annabelle as a TA at Timberline Middle School, and Tony as a TA for the AP Chinese class at Waterford–both selflessly contributing countless hours to support the learning of students of Chinese.  

Third, evidence of extra-mile efforts 

  • Annabelle by pursuing her studies in an independent study Chinese literature class, long after her high school graduation requirements were met, and Tony as our beloved Chinese Club president for the past two years, organizing fun and educational cultural activities for our students. 

So this year’s World Languages Department Award represents all three of our upper school world language programs, but most especially the outstanding achievements, contributions, and extra-mile efforts the two of you have made within the Chinese language program. This year we have made an exception because you two are so exceptional. Congratulations Annabelle and Tony! 


The following students have earned the Seal of Biliteracy—an honor that is awarded by the State of Utah and our school to recognize students with proficiency in more than one language. These students have diligently worked to achieve a comfort and ability in two (and in some cases, three!) languages that will serve them well. Congratulations to the following students:

Tony W. ’23
Annabelle Q. ’23
Ryan B. ’23
Lauren W. ’24

Niko W. ’24
Tyler A. ’24
Finn D. ’23
Sierra S. ’25


Remarks shared by Casey O’Malley, Academic Dean:

At the end of each year, we recognize a number of juniors for their outstanding academic achievement by awarding them the Junior Book Award.  They hold the highest academic academic records in the class and exhibit great intellectual curiosity and generosity.  This year, we have ten students who have all demonstrated these remarkable performances and qualities. The winners of 2023 Junior Book Award are:

Maggie L. ’24
Alessia M. ’24
Auden S. ’24
Marie F. ’24
Nathan K. ’24

Lauren W. ’24
Kevin Z. ’24
Ivan P. ’24
Gia W. ’24
Molly M. ’24

Congratulations to all recipients. I hope that your curiosity, drive, and eagerness to pursue answers to the big intellectual questions continues for years to come.


I am pleased to present to you the 2022-23 Waterford Award recipients. Each spring we recognize one or two students, who exemplify the spirit of our mission—joyfully growing through the depth and breadth of the liberal arts experience and selflessly giving back to the School in a multitude of ways.


Diesel’s impact on the community is broad and deep. His positive energy, optimism and smile are contagious to all in his orbit. He is kind, and compassionate and channels that endless energy toward the public good. He enjoys phenomenally high Emotional Intelligence—a magnetism that draws students and faculty in. He radiates positivity, warmth, and authentic care for all in the Waterford community. His friend group seems to know no bounds as he “makes time” for so many across grade levels and interests. He excels and models excellence in and out of the classroom. He has earned high honors throughout his time at Waterford, and teachers, and fellow students alike love Diesel!

He serves as our student body vice president, charged with community building and school spirit and I cannot think of another person more suited to this work. Diesel enthusiastically spends time each week planning dances, social events and spirit weeks.  He is busy and yet is present at as many concerts, plays, and games as his busy schedule allows leading cheers and firing up the crowd to support classmates 

Diesel led the effort to name the Waterford gym The Cage and the student section The Conspiracy of Ravens. He  helped design, unveil and MODEL the updated Poe Mascot Costume. A true sign of dedication!

Each week Diesel capably facilitates assembly welcoming all of us, and our speakers, and providing important community updates.

Diesel, as you all know, is a talented and dedicated athlete excelling and leading. A team captain in both basketball and lacrosse (a sport in which he battled back from injury this spring). Diesel is selfless and empathic and deeply understands how to motivate others as he hosted off-season workouts and bonding events for teammates. 

As a testament to his interpersonal skills, maturity and grace, Diesel was asked to help coach a Middle School basketball team this winter and in this role he excelled. Diesel served as an outstanding role model and mentor for cultivating a strong work ethic and team centric approach, his dedication and strong communication resonated with every player on the team.

Diesel is an energy giver, every time he is seen in a hallway or around campus he has a warm and inviting  smile on his face. He is surrounded by friends and will always go out of his way to share a friendly, “Hey, how are you?” as he walks by. His enthusiasm and cheerfulness is well-known and vital to the wellbeing of our community.

Diesel, thank you for all of your extraordinary contributions, we appreciate all that you do for Waterford! Congratulations!


Sarah’s love for Waterford has been evident since the moment she stepped on campus four years ago. She loves to learn and found a home at Waterford immediately. From the start, she eagerly wanted to experience everything this liberal arts experience had to offer. Our Liberal Arts mission became her mission.

Sarah knows how to do hard things and she does them with grace and persistence. Ever optimistic, positive and smiling, she is empathetic and devoted to helping others. She appreciates the kindness & support of peers, the company of her teachers and the opportunities for growth that life has afforded her.

Creative, caring, and diligent, Sara is an exemplary student and community member.

Sarah’s can-do attitude, curiosity, steadfast engagement with her academics and her willingness to advocate for herself serve as a model for us all. She strives for excellence in her work and utilizes feedback wisely to improve. The growth she has achieved as a student is notable; each year she has earned a higher GPA while engaging in more rigorous courses and demanding extracurricular activities.

Across campus, Sarah is consistently engaged and kind, always going out of her way to support her peers and connect with faculty. One of Sarah’s admirable intellectual habits is her open-mindedness, and although her interests span a variety of disciplines, she particularly loves literature and has pursued this interest relentlessly, from engaging in numerous creative writing electives to co-founding and editing our school’s literary magazine—The Rave— a position that allowed her to cultivate this passion throughout our community.

Sarah is also a vital member of the Yearbook staff serving as managing editor. Mr. Watkins laudes her dependability, but also how her kind and collaborative nature supports and lifts the entire yearbook staff.

A true liberal arts scholar, Sarah also joined the Science Olympiad team.

Sarah is a core member of the community service club as well as many other service initiatives that take place in the community. She utilized her Spanish skills when managing events to distribute school supplies and holiday gifts to the local community. She also tutors her classmates in a variety of subjects. She can be depended upon to volunteer for just about any event or opportunity on campus.

Sarah was also a standout Upper School orientation mentor, enthusiastically helping incoming freshmen and all new US students to acclimate to the expectations of Upper School.

And for two summers, Sarah has worked in Waterford’s summer camp.

Sarah Barber is an impressive young woman with impeccable character. She consistently displays remarkable grit, genuine compassion, and notable maturity. She has displayed a remarkable capacity each day to help others and create a more just and supportive community. We are all the better for being in Sarah’s company. Congratulations, Sarah!

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