MHS Celebrates the Class of 2019

MHS Celebrates the Class of 2019
Posted on 06/27/2019

Montclair High School celebrated its 152nd Commencement for the Class of 2019 with pomp, circumstance and the traditional crossing of the bridges to the amphitheatre.

adminstrators pose in caps and gowns
Superintendent Kendra V. Johnson, Board of Education President Eve Robinson and Principal Anthony Grosso and paused for a moment before leading the graduation procession.

Students filed out of the High School and made their way to their seats to the cheers of their families.

students file out in caps and gowns  graduates crossing bridge  graduates crossing bridge

            class of 2019 seated at graduation    class of 2019 banner

The Pledge of Allegiance, led by graduating seniors Lila Zimbalist and Isaac Restrick, was followed by the Star Spangled Banner to begin the ceremony.

Welcome remarks were from Student Coalition President Mark Testa, who told his fellow seniors that “we made it despite every obstacle in our way.” He continued, “What we have learned is the value of change and the ability to adapt and overcome.

graduate at podium

As he recalled the past year of highs and lows, he said he was “filled with Mountie pride.” He said he had recently been reflecting in the amphitheater where he saw an origami swan. “In my mind, I envisioned it flying away, but knew it was going nowhere. Like the swan, we will all spread our wings but a part of us will always remain here.”

Anthony Grosso, who became Principal of Montclair High School in October, addressed his first class of graduates with a message of positivity and encouragement. “Your time has come to an end at MHS but this is the beginning of something new,” he said, “the beginning of what you’re meant to do and who you’re meant to be.” He reminded them to “appreciate today, be careful with today, respect it and know it can change all your tomorrows.”

principal addressess students

Grosso was followed by the Honors Choir, who sang “Song of Farewell,” before he introduced the guest speaker, graduating senior Kimoni DePass, who gave the commencement address. DePass gave a personal and impassioned speech about learning about privilege and how it has affected her. “Coming from humble beginnings, means I had to work twice as hard and that sometimes you have to put your pride aside,” she said. “Your biggest advocate is you.”
commencement student speaker

To her fellow graduates she reflected, “Growth is a byproduct of change. We have matured so much since the time we walked through those doors for the first time. We grew more than we could ever have imagined.” Looking ahead, she added, “We are Montclair. We are responsible for how we will impact lives. Your presence is no mistake. You are exactly where you’re supposed to be.”

Superintendent Kendra Johnson led the presentation of the class for graduation along with Grosso. Following the awarding of diplomas by Montclair Board of Education President Eve Robinson, the alma mater was performed by the MHS Band and Orchestra, led by Class of ’19 graduate Liliana Marie Rodriguez.

           superintendent addresses graduates    graduates receiving their diplomas

                          congratulations balloon

View a video of the Commencement ceremony.

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