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Awards Ceremony Honors Middle Schoolers’ Contributions


A grid of photos showing students at the Middle School Awards Ceremony

Clockwise from top: Emma Campbell ’29, Harper Rankin ’29, Sydney Loyola ’29, Embrey Zola ’29, Aishwarya Babu ’29, Liliana Viera ’29, Zuri Settles ’29 and Lucy Shaw ’29 gather before the assembly; Hudson Harrell ’29 is congratulated by friends for being recognized with the Layne Stirman Award; Sais Smith ’27 expresses delight after winning the Mandarin award.


The Middle School Awards Ceremony, held Thursday, June 1, at a gathering in the Warner Arena of the A.E. Finley Activity Center, celebrated students in sixth, seventh and eighth grades and recognized a number of students who have demonstrated outstanding character, citizenship and scholarship. 

Head of Middle School Bernardo Guzmán welcomed everyone to the celebration and offered praise and encouragement to the classes of 2027, 2028 and 2029. 

“Every student in this room — each of you seated here, I’m willing to bet — worked really hard this year. It may have been studying for a test, improving your basketball handle or preparing your first SGA election speech. It may have been mastering a new painting technique, solving a challenging algebra problem or maintaining an important friendship. You all worked hard. I’m also willing to bet that you had a goal in mind, that you set goals for yourselves, that you had vision.”

He shared the story of Jordan Romero, shared in the book “No Summit Out of Sight: The True Story of the Youngest Person to Climb the Seven Summits,” who accomplished the amazing feat by the age of 15. Guzmán pointed out that Romero set the goal for himself when he was in the fourth grade and discussed how Jordan worked really hard to meet the goal.

“Working hard at anything, not just climbing mountains, is an act of bravery,” Guzmán said. “You don’t have to climb seven huge mountains by the age of 15 to be inspiring. You don’t need to beat any Guinness world records or write a book. You don’t have to get all A’s. You don’t have to have a million followers. You just have to have vision, and you just have to work hard. That is more than enough to inspire those that love and care for you.” 

Congratulations to all of the divisions’ students for their many accomplishments this year!

A grid of photos showing students at the Middle School Awards Ceremony

Clockwise from top left: Simran Vishnubhakta hugs a friend; Edward C. Yohman Award recipient Cameron Wolborsky ’28 (center) is congratulated by Logan Lee ’28 and Alex Fine-Carroll ’28; Carys Thomas ’27 gets a high-five after accepting the Fine Arts Department’s Art Award; Ione D. Pegram Award recipients Max Rein ’27 and Hannah Bever ’27 are all smiles after the assembly.

In addition, the following students were recognized for specific achievements or demonstration of character.

The following awards recognize students for demonstrating admirable character:

  • Layne Stirman Award, given to two sixth-graders in recognition of their sportsmanship, perseverance and compassion: Hudson Harrell ’29 and Leah Rivers ’29
  • Edward C. Yohman Award, given to two seventh-graders in recognition of their humility, leadership and integrity: Kinsley Earwood ’28 and Cameron Wolborsky ’28
  • Ione D. Pegram Award, given to two eighth-graders in recognition of their grace, integrity and optimism: Hannah Bever ’27 and Max Rein ’27
  • DAR Youth Citizenship Medal, given to one student in each grade in recognition of their honor, service, courage, leadership and patriotism: Anika Le Cheminant ’29, Joy Cimino ’28 and Zara Ali ’27

These awards recognize outstanding scholarship and dedication to a particular discipline:

  • Hunter Family Scholarship for excellence in fine arts: Liliana Barroso ’27 and Adalyn Huang ’27
  • Scholar Awards
    • Sixth-Grade Scholar Award: Sophie Boram Allen ’29
    • Seventh-Grade Scholar Award: Xavier Rivera ’28
    • Eighth-Grade Scholar Award: Karolyna Huntanar ’27

The Eighth-Grade Academic Department Awards are given to students for outstanding work in a particular subject area:

  • Language Arts
    • College Preparatory Language Arts: Omar Khan ’27
    • Advanced Language Arts: Yara Othman ’27
  • Math
    • Pre-Algebra: Bella Weeks ’27
    • Algebra: Rainy Ye ’27 
    • Geometry: Nathaniel Minsley ’27
  • Science: Max Rein ’27
  • World History: Cameron Moran ’27
  • World Language
    • Latin: Carys Thomas ’27
    • Mandarin: Sais Smith ’27
    • Spanish: Dylan Walls ’27
  • Fine Arts
    • Art: Carys Thomas ’27
    • Band: Eva Awasthi ’27
    • Choir: Yara Othman ’27
    • Theatre: Sierra Kish ’27 
    • Strings: Izzy Sotomayor ’27
  • Physical Education: Bree Blackley ’27 and Thomas Russell ’27
  • STEM: Nathan Jie ’27

Guzmán concluded the ceremony by reminding all students, “Have a vision and set goals for yourself. Care for them, check on them. They can be small or the size of a mountain — please find ways you can inspire others.”