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Middle Schoolers Cheer One Another On at Awards Ceremony


Clockwise from top left: Yohman Award recipients Sophie Boram Allen ’29 and Graham Sundstrom ’29; World Language Award (Mandarin) recipient Janice Jeong ’28; Layne Stirman Award recipient Christopher Wilson ’30 with Amie McCall; World Language Award (Latin) recipient Reed Shuma ’28

Student excellence in academics and electives was shining brightly at the 2024 Middle School Awards and Recognition Ceremony, held May 30 in Warner Arena. Faculty and staff were joined by the entire Middle School student body and many families in congratulating those Ravens whose hard work and commitment were recognized with special awards.

Head of Middle School Bernardo Guzmán welcomed the assembly, setting the tone for the event by encouraging students to celebrate their peers with enthusiasm. He continued:

Achievement in a community like this — a community focused on leadership — is truly a team sport. If your name is called because you have done really well in your math class, for example, we are not just celebrating you and your unique combination of talent and hard work. 

We are also celebrating the teachers who have taught you along the way. We are celebrating your parents, guardians, siblings and family who have supported you, maybe by staying up late, being a cheerleader at home, maybe with a little tough love, maybe by comforting you through moments of frustration or self-doubt. …

We are celebrating the close friendships that helped motivate you to come to school each day and try your best — the study partners, the relationships that helped create a learning environment where you could truly do your best. We are celebrating the fact that we can all be here, together, celebrating. 

Following the Pledge of Allegiance, led by Associate Head of Middle School Nicole Brown, two students each were recognized with grade-level character awards. The recipients are:

  • Layne Stirman Award (sixth grade): Liv Clifford ’30 and Christopher Wilson ’30

  • Edward C. Yohman Award (seventh grade): Graham Sundstrom ’29 and Sophie Boram Allen ’29

  • Ione D. Pegram Award (eighth grade, awarded by Lindsey Pegram): Cameron Wolborsky ’28 and Joy Cimino ’28 

Nancye Slagle of the local Daughters of the American Revolution chapter presented one student from each grade with the DAR Youth Citizenship Medal:

  • Grayer English ’30

  • Nolan Ward ’29

  • Cameron Gordon ’28

Clockwise from top left: IDE Coordinator Melissa Spainhour with STEM+ Award recipient Ashvik Poli ’28; Fine Arts Award (Theatre) recipient Madelyn Bekerman ’28; Associate Head of Middle School Nicole Brown and Head of Middle School Bernardo Guzmán, at center, on the dais

The Fine Arts Department’s Elisabeth McChesney then announced that rising ninth-grader Grace Parker ’28 has been awarded the Hunter Family Scholarship for her outstanding voice portfolio. 

Guzmán then shared the recipients of the Academic Scholar Awards:

  • Sixth grade: Maximilian Solomon ’30

  • Seventh grade: Hudson Perdue ’29

  • Eighth grade: Xavier Rivera ’28

In addition to these awards, each academic and elective department recognized outstanding eighth-grade students. They are:

  • English Language Arts: Tyler Ge ’28 and Kinsley Earwood ’28

  • Math: Carleigh Cates ’28, Kaida Kostern ’28 and Emerson Villarroel ’28

  • Science: Riko Maekawa ’28

  • Social Studies: Carleigh Cates ’28

  • World Language: Reed Shuma ’28 (Latin), Janice Jeong ’28 (Mandarin) and Lilly Ramsey ’28 (Spanish)

  • Fine Arts:

    • Band: Cameron Gordon ’28

    • Choir: Mila Sharkady ’28

    • Strings: Eve Munford ’28

    • Theatre: Madelyn Bekerman ’28

    • Visual Arts: Joy Cimino ’28

  • Physical Education: Jet Tran ’28 and Lauren Perry ’28

  • STEM+: Ashvik Poli ’28

Finally, Guzmán thanked the students who served this year on the division’s Peer Council, Student Ambassadors and Student Government. The assembly was then dismissed.

View the program here. Enjoy photos from the event on our Flickr page.