Last Saturday, six student-athletes graduated from Carrabassett Valley Academy at the Richard Bell Chapel, at the base of Sugarloaf Mountain. We also saluted our Winter Term Seniors Ben DiBiase, Oscar Horovitz and Gannon Stewart. Congratulations to the resilient and remarkable Class of 2021!
Head of School Kate Punderson remarked during the ceremony "While the road to getting here was not the path that we had expected, nonetheless, it was an extraordinary year. There were challenges. There were obstacles. There were many moments of triumph. Today we will celebrate all of the moments that have brought us here together, with a new sense of gratitude toward this special gathering. Thank you to the parents, grandparents, siblings, extended family and friends that have loved and supported these deserving student-athletes through their CVA journey, and especially through the difficult past year. And equally as important, I want to thank the remarkable CVA faculty and staff that have nurtured, taught, coached, and mentored all of our Big Dogs. You are all heroes in my book and I am eternally grateful. But I save my most important thank you to the Class of 2021. Thank you for your perseverance – you made this happen. In true CVA fashion you never gave up, and your love for each other, and for CVA has brought us together today. Each of you so deserve the diploma you are about to receive. Soak in this moment and be proud of your accomplishments."
The Valedictorian, Arden Velenchik and Salutatorian, Brighton Bradford addressed the class during the ceremony, along with Senior Class Choice speaker Sam Osgood and Faculty Choice speaker James Holahan.
Other award recipients recognized at the ceremony:
Arden Velenchik, John Ritzo Headmaster's Award, for her leadership qualities and her notable contribution to the betterment of the school and the local community.
Sam Osgood, David Holmes Most Improved Student Award, for showing the most growth of any senior over the course of his time at CVA.
Brighton Bradford, Benjamin Weisbein Award for best exemplifying those qualities that Ben possessed. He was a superb athlete and an exceptional student who always worked tirelessly to achieve his potential. Brighton, like Ben, truly represented the “CVA way:” outstanding athletics, serious scholarship, personal development and strength of character.
Eli Fournier, CVA Alumni Association Award, for exhibiting a strong and steady character, reliability, consistently positive attitude, and respect for others. Eli has proven a commitment to “doing his best” academically, athletically and in the school community.
Drew Hooker, J. Keith Penninger Memorial Fund Award for representing CVA in terms of leadership and commitment to the CVA mission and community.
The H. King Cummings Service Award was given to Steve Sitz, Director of Finance, in honor of his seventeen year career with CVA.
Benjamin Bisson ’09 inspired and celebrated the graduates as the key note speaker.
The annual Senior Banquet was held at the Sugarloaf Base Lodge Friday night, with a reception on the Beach and dinner in the Maple Room.
During the ceremony, The Denny Flag Award was presented to Acy Craig and Angelique Labelle in honor of their commitment to excellence and CVA.
The evening ended with the Senior Slideshow - a fan favorite walk down memory lane.