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Upper School Recognizes Student Achievement During Award Ceremony, Jourdan Jones `23 Receives Country Day Award

Upper School Recognizes Student Achievement During Award Ceremony, Jourdan Jones `23 Receives Country Day Award

Upper School faculty, staff, family members, and student body celebrated 38 student recognitions during the Upper School award ceremony.

It was time well spent in reflection and celebration, as Jenn Weinheimer, head of Upper School, encouraged all the students to consider their efforts.

“As we take stock today and recognize achievements, I think it’s important to remind you that awards ceremonies are not just about those who get called to the stage; they are about a moment to reflect and acknowledge that a lot of work was done,” said Weinheimer. “Not everyone wins an award—and that’s life! You are part of a community of greatness, and today we celebrate a few particular kinds of achievement on a particular timeline…every kid in this room has some skill, some talent, some ability to connect with others, and we don’t have awards for all of those skills and talents. Know that you are seen. Know that you are valued – with or without the piece of paper or the trip to the stage. Celebrate your friends’ successes and keep perspective.”

Awards were bestowed for everything from the arts to service to athletics to academics, and the enthusiasm in Keeler Theater was palpable.

“Congratulations for all the growth you’ve experienced this year. Congratulations on that spectacular failure that led you back into a teacher’s office to figure out a new way. Congratulations for getting it right—for now,” continued Weinheimer. “Stay healthy, work hard, be radically kind, and turn your virtue into action. If you’re a senior, go out into the world and be ready to feel uncommonly prepared for college courses but sometimes unprepared for the small hiccups of life. Call your Country Day friends, come back and visit your teachers, ask for help. If you’re just finishing your freshman year and you’re exhausted, good. Hard work should leave you feeling like you’ve earned a bit of rest. And do…but find different ways to use your brain this summer, don’t just turn your brain off. Get a job, help a neighbor, stain the deck, write a letter to a great uncle to learn about his childhood, write another chapter—because before you know it, another year is over, and it’s time to turn the page.”

Two juniors – Parker Corbin and Marley Handler – received the Peter Levinson Memorial Award for “giving of oneself in schoolwork and school activities, leadership, a zest for competitive athletics…a positive attitude…and a commitment to community service.”

“In addition to his mentorship of younger players on Upper School sports teams, he [Parker] has mentored our younger students through Students Helping Students and service as a student writing tutor…He thinks of others before himself and does the right and admirable thing even when no one is watching,” said Weinheimer about Parker Corbin.

In addition to the Peter Levinson Memorial Award, Handler also received the David E. Laird Computer Science Award and the Bausch & Lomb Science Award.

“Whether in her independent study to design a robotic prosthetic or volunteering to 3D print ear savers for health care workers during the darkest days of the pandemic, she [Marley] finds ways to take her interests to the next level and use them as ways to help others…While her voice is often quiet, her impact is great and her intellect is remarkable,” said Weinheimer.

Head of School Rob Zimmerman `98 presented the Country Day Award, which is the highest honor the school can bestow upon a student. This award recognizes the student who, in the opinion of the faculty, best represents those qualities for which we want the school to be known. This year, Jourdan Jones `23 received this recognition.

“Jourdan has a unique presence and sophisticated understanding of who she is and what her voice represents; in fact, with her poise, charisma, and maturity, she sometimes seems like more of an adult than some of us adults,” said Zimmerman. “If Jourdan is fierce, though, she is never pugnacious. She relishes the give and take of a conversation or debate and displays a generous curiosity about the world. Her warm smile lights up a room as much as her brilliant intellect. And she is multi-talented. A gifted tennis player and track star, Jourdan balances athletic grace and competitive fire. In the artistic world, her perspective is particularly powerful; we have all been astonished at the beauty and maturity of her award-winning artwork and the wisdom and compassion of her remarkable poetry. No matter the setting, she is always in command of her voice… Jourdan is more than ready to be of service to the world; she is ready to lead it.”

Jones also received the Patterson Prize for Poetry and the visual arts awards (studio) and was recognized as a National African American Merit Award student.

Congratulations to all the award recipients:

  • Joseph F. Hofmeister Scroll Award: Brina Crellin `25 and Nick Watts `23
  • Archive Award: Charlize Rust `24, Kiera Yackey `25, and Elizabeth Zimmerman `24
  • Patterson Prize for Poetry: Jourdan Jones `23
  • Patterson Prize for Prose: Micah Murdoch `23
  • Thomas D. Gettler `76 Creative Writing Award: Annalyse Deming `23
  • Outstanding Female Underclassman: Molly Klekamp `25
  • Outstanding Male Underclassman: Ryan Coyle `25 and Nate Paumier `25
  • James A. Wright Sportsmanship Award: Sami Hess `23 and Vlad Johns `23
  • Letterman Leadership Award: Kyle Collett `23 and CJ DeBra `23
  • Shirley Heinichen Outstanding Female Athlete: Gracie Barnes `23
  • J. David McDaniel Outstanding Male Athlete: Joe Gibson `23
  • Tony Strauss Service-Learning Award: Will Griffin `23
  • Fred Carey Memorial Award: Rhiannon Sherman `23
  • Fine Arts Award in Drama: Josh Williamson `23
  • Fine Arts Award in Technical Theatre: Annalyse Deming `23
  • Fine Arts Award in Vocal Music: Catherine Monroe`25
  • Fine Arts Award in Instrumental Music: Will Donovan `23
  • Visual Arts Award – Studio: Jourdan Jones `23
  • Visual Arts Award – Photography: Max Fink `23
  • Messer Award: Alex Riemann `24 and Will Schiff `24
  • William H. Chatfield Award: Frances Kovach `23
  • David E. Laird Computer Science Award: Marley Handler `24
  • Robinson-Bye English Award: Devon Michalski `23
  • Indian Hill Historical Society Outstanding Achievement in American History Award: Ethan Rezer `23
  • Lee S. Pattison History Award: Nick Watts `23
  • Ash Mathematics Award: Will Donovan `23 and Weison Huang `23
  • Martha W. Burton Award in French:  Yousef Mostafa `23
  • Spanish Language Award: Ethan Rezer `23
  • Chinese Language Award: Annalyse Deming `23
  • Jeremy Eller Class of 2019 World Language Award: Emil Hettich `23
  • Bausch & Lomb Science Award: Marley Handler `24
  • Gordon R. Wright Science Award: Will Donovan `23
  • Cum Laude Society Class of 2023 Recognition: Annalyse Deming, Will Donovan, Will Griffin, Emil Hettich, Weison Huang, Miller Mann, Devon Michalski, Yousef Mostafa, Mica Murdoch, Miki Ozawa, Ethan Rezer, Lizzy Stacy, Emma Valentin, Josh Williamson
  • National Merit Commended Students: Will Donovan `23, Mica Murdoch `23, and Josh Williamson `23
  • National African American Merit Students: Ami Bah `24 and Jourdan Jones `23
  • National Hispanic Merit Students: Gigi Macias-Jaime `24, Alex Riemann `24, and Christian Sprinkle `23
  • Peter Levinson Memorial Award: Parker Corbin `24 and Marley Handler `24
  • Country Day Award: Jourdan Jones `23

Click here for pictures from the awards ceremony. Following the award ceremony, the entire school community rallied around the Class of 2023 for an end-of-year tradition: the Clap-Out. Click here for more pictures of this year’s  Clap-Out.

Commencement for the Class of 2023 is Saturday, June 3 at 6 p.m.