PHOTOS: Graduation for the Class of 2023

Santa Catalina Lower and Middle School celebrated the Class of 2023 during the school’s 73rd Annual Commencement Exercises on June 2.

In their light blue and dark blue robes, the 36 members of the graduating class gathered together before family and friends on the Lower Terrace. Student speakers Paige Skinner and Aliya Denton shared reflections of their Catalina journey.

Paige, a lifer, recounted her journey from PreKindergarten through Grade 8, sharing thoughts about what it felt like at each stage and stories of the teachers who influenced her. “Through all of my experiences, my peers and I discovered the balance between academic achievements and making memories with friends,” she said. “… Catalina is a place of magic. Once you’re a Cougar, you can never let that go.”

Aliya reflected on how everyone welcomed her into the Catalina community when she started in seventh grade. “[Catalina was] a place where I could be surrounded by students who encouraged me, teachers who understood me, and an environment where I could truly grow,” she said.

Grade 8 parent and Upper School science teacher Dr. Christian Reilly was the day’s Commencement speaker. As a scientist, he spoke about exploring the unknown, and not only embracing the adventure but planning for it. He pointed to the compass as a useful tool to guide them. “Some of the best compasses—for land use, anyway—come with a little mirror, and when you’re sighting you next destination, you get these little glimpses of yourself and where you’ve been,” he said. “It’s a nice reminder that whatever goals you decide to aim at, this community is behind you.”

Congratulations to the Class of 2023!

See photos from graduation.

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