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Country Day Celebrates 97 Years with All-School Convocation

The new school year is bookended by two all-school gatherings, and on Friday, August 26 we celebrated Opening Convocation to bring in the school’s 97th year.  
 
Head of School Rob Zimmerman ’98 welcomed students, staff, and teachers back to a fresh start. 

“A new year comes with new opportunities, a fresh start, a clean slate,” said Zimmerman. “Seize this chance and take advantage of the new year to be the best version of yourself.” 
 
Zimmerman also welcomed more than 140 new students from more than 60 zip codes, other parts of Ohio, the country, and the world.  
 
“We all must each honor our obligation to make our new students feel at home - remember, we were all new students once…And seniors, no one’s example is more powerful than yours. Take this obligation seriously. Not too long ago, you were like these kindergarteners looking up to the senior class.” 
 
This year, the Class of 2023 and the Class of 2035 processed in together to officially begin the event; Tara McMullen Hofstetter, early childhood center teacher and parent, provided the invocation; Vondale Batchelor, facilities staff member, gave an outstanding performance of the National Anthem; and the Class of 2028 led the school in the Alma Mater.  
 
The formal portion of the ceremony moved to Keeler Theater, where students from grades 5-12 gathered to listen to remarks from Zimmerman, Board President Tina DiSanto, Head of Upper School and Director of Academic Affairs Jenn Weinheimer, senior class co-presidents Olivia Day and Matthew Castrucci, and Student Council President Nick Watts.  

Weinheimer presented the class scholars.  

Class of 2023: Josh Williamson

Class of 2024: Marley Handler

Class of 2025: Donovan Gray and Louisa Joy

“Each of you is the future of Country Day,” said DiSanto. “With your help, we will continue to build on our rich legacy.” 
 
Olivia and Matthew echoed her sentiment. 
 
“We’ve learned from different leaders over the years and now are ready and excited to take those ideas and build on them to make this the best year yet,” said Castrucci. 
 
Nick provided perspective and a challenge for the students. 
 
“No matter who you are, and whether you realize it or not, there is always someone who looks up to you, and you who looks up to those around you. It is my sincere hope that all of us, myself included, can enter this year with just a little bit more mindfulness about the example we set for others. One of the prime objectives of our new mission statement – kindling the potential of others – is only accomplished in large part if we set our examples in the spirt of our core virtues of compassion, courage, integrity, respect and responsibility.”