The members of the Shoreham-Wading River High School’s Class of 2023 proceeded onto the football field for a celebratory evening of commencement exercises on Friday, June 23.
The students were led by Principal Frank Pugliese and Assistant Principal John Holownia, followed by administrators, Board of Education members and faculty.
STEM Director Dr. Joseph Paolicelli introduced salutatorian Bryan Vogel, who shared memories with his fellow classmates and encouragement to face challenges with confidence and conviction for the future.
Valedictorian Anja Minty performed DeBussey’s “Arabesque No. 1” before Director of Humanities Nicole Waldbauer read a prepared statement introducing Anja’s many accomplishments. Anja then took the stage and shared her farewell address and words of inspiration.
Superintendent of Schools Gerard Poole then asked students to face their families and thank them before sharing his remarks. He applauded the many local, county and state championships, academic recognitions, successful technical education pathways, music achievements and more that the Class of 2023 has attained.
He also encouraged students to have a roadmap for the future, but if the roadmap has some bumps or derailments, to regroup, pivot and improvise. He highlighted the great opportunities offered to students in the district and underscored the foundational skills that will lead to future success.
Pugliese then thanked all the students who took part in the ceremony, the first responders and the exceptional academic seniors. He shared his enthusiasm for the future of the students after their primary education in SWR.
The diplomas were presented by BOE President Katie Andersen, Vice President Henry Perez and trustees Michael Lewis, Robert Rose, Thomas Sheridan, James Smith and Meghan Tepfenhardt.