Blair Recognizes Underclassmen at Year-End Assembly

Blair’s freshman, sophomore and junior classes came together on May 27 on Hampshire Field to celebrate students’ accomplishments at the Underclass Prize Assembly. During the event, faculty members presented a number of subject and major department prizes, as well as awards that recognize achievements in other aspects of student life. To watch the full presentation, press "play" below.

Dean of Academics Nathan Molteni welcomed the audience to the last assembly of the 2020-2021 school year, commending students for their hard work and dedication during an unprecedented and life-changing time.

“I think most of us are looking ahead excitedly to a summer of greater freedom and a coming school year which returns the nature of our physical spaces at Blair to what we once knew,” he said. “But we can never truly go back to what was, only forward to what will be. Next year, just as in this one, Blair will once again be what all of you choose to make of it. You’ve done amazing work this year bringing to life this community in all of its many aspects.”

Following Mr. Molteni’s remarks, academic department chairs recognized students for outstanding work in their respective subjects. Veteran English teacher and president of Blair’s cum laude chapter Kaye Evans then inducted junior members into the society.

Blair administrators presented several special prizes to underclassmen, after which Head of School Peter G. Curran addressed the community for a final time before the school year closed. In his speech, he highlighted the many “firsts” in a year that will go down in Blair history, with the most poignant being the introduction of The Five Fundamentals of Living and Working at Blair Academy.

Recounting The Five Fundamentals—1) See the good; 2) Know yourself & practice honesty; 3) Honor the dignity of others; 4) Show care in all spaces; and 5) Be curious & suspend judgment—Mr. Curran asked students to truly reflect on and embrace the values as their own, both on campus and at home. He finished his speech by reminding students of their intellectual curiosity and willingness to take smart risks.

“I couldn’t be more grateful to stand here before you tonight and to wish you a wonderful break filled with time with families and friends as you recharge for next year,” he said. “I will be ready to enthusiastically welcome you back to campus in August. Until then, be well, get some rest and know that all of us at Blair will miss you until you return!”

Blair students and faculty will now prepare to say goodbye as the year officially ends on May 29 and summer vacation begins!

Congratulations to these awardees:

Freshman English Prize: Natalie Chamberlain ’24, Peyton Franz ’24 & Simisola Onakomaiya ’24

Sophomore English Prize: Elizabeth “Betsy” Kim ’23, Chloe Lau ’23 & Ellie Walker ’23

The Henry B. Cowan Prize: Megan Donaghy ’22, Aidan Ward ’22 & Timothy Xi ’22

The Edyth Jeffrey Shakespeare Essay Prize:

Nathan Bo ’24

Fengyi Fiona Han ’23

Charlene Jiao ’24

Elizabeth “Betsy” Kim ’23

Garrett Lee ’24

Lorenzo Norman ’23

Paul Ognissanti ’24

Amanda Olthof ’23

Owen Shin ’24

Renee Tracey ’23

Napat “Jene” Vachirapong ’23

Ellie Walker ’23

Emily Wang ’23

Shihan “Apple” Wu ’24

Kaitlyn Zachareas ’23

Michael Zhang ’24

Underclass Art Prize: Duc Dinh ’22

Photography Art Prize: Luisa Fernández ’22

3D Art Prize: Sophia Papadopoulo ’22

Kampmann Video Prize: Chris Tung ’22

2D Art Prize: Julia Twomey ’24

Design Art Prize: Timothy Xi ’22

Freshman History Prize: Simisola Onakomaiya ’24 & Owen Shin ’24

Sophomore History Prize: Elizabeth “Betsy” Kim ’23 & Ellie Walker ’23

Junior History Prize: Yuchuan “George” Gan ’22 & Ben Liu ’22

Chinese Language Prize: Duc Dinh ’22

Pythagoras Prize for Geometry: Morgan Edwards ’24

Newton Prize for Calculus: Yuchuan “George” Gan ’22 & Timothy Xi ’22

Euler Prize for Analysis: Aidan Ward ’22 & Dylan Zhang ’22

Gauss Prize for Algebra: Shihan “Apple” Wu ’24

Instrumental Music Prize: Laila Davson ’22

Vocal Music Prize: Nikki Kirkwood ’22

Underclass Theatre Prize: Alex Schamberger ’22

Religion & Philosophy Prize: Bella Conway ’23 & Evelyn Sharma ’22

Biology Prize: Michael Zhang ’24 & Shihan “Apple” Wu ’24

Chemistry Prize: ElizabethBetsy” Kim ’24

Physics Prize: Ben Liu ’22

Cum Laude Inductees - Class of 2022:

Archer Benedict '22

Sofia Ciminello '22

Laila Davson '22

Duc Dinh '22

Isabelle Dugan '22

Frederick Hargett III '22

Caroline Johnson '22

Benjamin Liu '22

Sean Um ’22

Aidan Ward ’22

Timothy Xi '22

Elleen Xue '22

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Stock photo of book shelves

The all-school read provides the entire Blair community, from students to faculty and staff, an opportunity to engage with a single work of literature. The tradition, started in 2017, offers students the chance to interact with up-and-coming authors and thinkers, and it allows the entire community to have a collective conversation about important issues.

Read More about New & Noteworthy: The Boy with Two Hearts Is Blair’s 2021 All-School Read