Webutuck graduates
embrace the future at 2024 commencement

Valedictorian Riley Morgan Thirlwall received her diploma from Superintendent Raymond Castellani as one of the 45 members of the Class of 2024 at the 70th annual Commencement at Webutuck High School on Thursday, June 27.

Leila Hawken

Webutuck graduates embrace the future at 2024 commencement

AMENIA — Taking the first step toward living out into their future of wide possibilities were the 45 members of the graduating class of 2024 at their Commencement ceremony at Webutuck High School on Thursday, June 27.

A justifiable sense of pride in individual achievement was evident as well as the joy of sharing the experience with family, friends, and classmates. The weather, although breezy, was perfection for the event held under a huge tent filled to capacity. The sunset-lit view of the fields and hills to the east provided a breathtaking backdrop.

School Superintendent Raymond Castellani offered welcoming remarks, reminded of Aesop’s fable of the eagle and the crow, noting that the crow is the only species that dares to peck at an eagle. With the crow on his back pecking at his neck, the eagle ascends to a height where the air becomes too thin for the crow, ending the attack.

“Go higher to get better,” Castellani advised, urging the class to be like the eagle.

“Set goals that are beyond your reach,” said Principal Robert Knuschke, challenging the class to find something to be passionate about, something that will make the world better, and importantly, something sufficiently large that it might result in failure.

The Commencement address was delivered by Danielle Mollica, Executive Director of the Silo Ridge Community Foundation.

Mollica spoke of four virtues paving the path toward success: Honesty, Fairness, Strength and Wisdom.

“Embrace every chance to learn,” Mollica said, advising graduates not to fear failure.

“You are allowed to make mistakes,” said Salutatorian Amanda Intrieri advising the class to focus on the future, always moving forward.

Valedictorian Riley Morgan Thirlwall expressed gratitude to the school community.

“Always remember that the sky is the limit. This is just the beginning in all your stories,” Thirlwall said, urging the Class of 2024 to be prepared for challenges and embrace failures.

Following the speeches, diplomas were awarded by Principal Knuschke and Supt.Castellani.

Leila Hawken

Graduating seniors stepped briskly toward their seats at the 70th annual Commencement under a tent at Webutuck High School on Thursday, June 27.

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