Mineola HS’s Class of 2022 celebrates collaboration

Mineola HS’s Class of 2022 celebrates collaboration
Mineola High School held their commencement ceremony on Saturday, June 25 at The Tilles Center. (Photo by Brandon Duffy)

Top students from Mineola High School’s Class of 2022 echoed sentiments of getting through adversity and sharing a common goal during the school’s 131st commencement Saturday morning at The Tilles Center. 

Salutatorian Katherine Ahn spoke to the audience about what the years spent at Mineola High School meant to her.

“In Mineola, I have no hesitation saying that we are part of a community of support and unity,” Ahn, who is attending Northeastern University next fall, said. ‘’I am thankful to Mineola for the memories and for being a home to me throughout my adolescent years. Let us continue to enjoy the unexpected or seemingly ordinary moments of our lives. May we never lose our sense of wonder.”

Valedictorian Alvin Tsai recalled the collective embarrassment the class had going into their freshman year because of their eighth-grade music video only to experience the triumph of winning the battle of the classes. Tsai, who is attending MIT next fall, pointed to the collective joy and eagerness to accomplish one common mission.

“When people come together to achieve a certain goal, something mind-blowing happens and it seems as if it is too good to be true,” Tsai said. 

Tsai drew comparisons from the American Revolution and more recently the world’s response to creating a COVID-19 vaccine as examples of the common good that comes from collaboration. 

“Collaboration truly brings the best out of all of us. In the future, whether you choose to go to college or the workforce, or any other path, I highly encourage each and every one of you to work with your classmates, colleagues, advisers and professors,” Tsai said. “When people come together, something magical happens. We are more open-minded, we accept each other’s ideas, we listen to feedback and we collectively achieve our goals.”

Deputy Superintendent of Schools Matthew Gaven cited his personal experiences with the graduates, many of whom he has known since they were toddlers. Gaven said it was a gift watching the class of 2022 grow up into learners and leaders while readying them for their next steps outside of Mineola.

“After the pandemic, all of you have the ability to adapt quickly with a positive attitude to the unexpected. Be comfortable in that ambiguity,” Gaven said. “Be confident in your ability to navigate. As you progress through life, there will be times when the path is not clear. Trust yourself, trust your family, trust that you have a clear vision, even when you cannot see a clear answer.”

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