“It’s surreal,” “I can’t believe it’s actually happening,” “I’m sad to be leaving,” and “I’m looking forward to what’s next,” sum up the mixed sentiments of the senior class as they inch closer to graduation day. 

June 3rd is hours away and seniors feel the weight of it all. The realization that high school will no longer be a present experience, but a memory, has stopped many seniors in their tracks. Although everyone knows students’ time at PA culminates in walking across a stage and shaking Headmaster Dr. Todd Flanders’ hand, it’s shocking to realize the long awaited day is actually approaching. For some, it’s almost as if it won’t feel real until the day has passed. 

Providence Academy Spanish Teacher Señora Fran Ramirez smiles as she proudly hangs students’ graduation cards in her classroom. Emma Wohlwend ‘22 is one of many students who share grad party invitations with teachers, a charming opportunity that a small school like PA provides through strong relationships with teachers.

Amidst all these emotions, big things are happening: decision day for colleges has passed, seniors finished painting the senior rock, and many have sent out grad party invites. Despite the fast paced nature of the last couple of weeks, the Class of ‘22 is still taking time to reflect on the chapter of their life that will soon be over. 

“I’ve grown up with this school, these teachers, and these people. I’m sad to be leaving something that’s been a part of my life for so long,” confessed Sophia Gable ‘22, after finding it complicated to articulate her feelings toward graduation. 

“I feel like I’ve just lived here the past 14 years,” remarked Lifelong Lion Eli Schmidt ‘22 with a chuckle.

Schmidt is one of twenty PA seniors who have been attending Providence Academy since Pre-K. These students can easily say that a beautiful brick building on a hill has been their second home for almost eighty percent of their lives. 

“Over the years, there were times I wished I went to a bigger school and other times I’ve been very grateful to have been here for so long,” continued Schmidt, “But in the end, I’m glad I’m a Lifelong Lion because that’s what God planned for me. And at the same time, I’m looking forward to what’s next.”

Seniors Liz Trubeck, Sophie Koch, Anna Heaney, and Ava Wasserman make their handprints on the senior rock with fellow classmates, participating in a long-standing Providence Academy senior tradition.

There’s a lot on the horizon for the sixty-eight soon-to-be graduates. Seniors visualize years full of new responsibility, travel, independence, new people, new things, and the ability to stretch themselves in new ways. 

Additionally, as teachers send off yet another graduating class, they can’t help but notice how much they’ll miss these seniors. 

Upper School History teacher Mr. Ian Skemp shared his thoughts smiling, “Morale is high in this class. They have a certain level of comradery that you don’t see in every graduating class. Their willingness to enjoy each other’s company and maintain civility despite differences has prepared them well for college.”

Overall, as these individuals make the transition from students to alumni, it’s clear they will bring PA values on each of their journeys, wherever they may lead.