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2023 Commencement graphic by Virginia Montgomery with Kingman Ink

On Friday, June 2, Providence Day’s Class of 2023 held their 49th Commencement on a beautiful, sunny day. Proud mothers, fathers, family members, and friends watched with smiles, and through happy tears and cell phones while “Pomp and Circumstance” played as the 162 members of the senior class began their processional walk down the aisle.

Julia Wood ‘23 gave the invocation which was followed by Head of School Dr. Glyn Cowlishaw’s remarks. Cowlishaw told the standing room only crowd that he was trying to set a vibe of “being at a Taylor Swift concert and the King Charles Coronation” which was definitely felt throughout the Mosack Athletic Center. One of his most impressive announcements was what these seniors had accomplished. Out of the 162 soon to be graduates, 86 different schools in 29 states would represent PD, as well as two schools in Europe and four entering the military. Ninety-three percent of the Class of 2023 received $15.1M in merit scholarships and academic honors.

Katelyn Horne ‘08, Senior Associate, Internal Arbitration at Arnold & Porter in Washington, D.C., was this year’s Commencement speaker. She graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University School of Foreign Service with a bachelor’s degree in Foreign Service in 2011 and at Columbia University was a James Kent Scholar, earning her Juris Doctor (J.D.) in 2015. Among her many accomplishments are serving as an associate in the Executive Office of the President in The White House (2010-2011) and an associate legal officer to His Excellency Judge Hisashi Owada of the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

Insights from Horne included “cherish time with your family, travel, learn from your teachers, maintain perspective because life isn’t fair, try new things, don’t be afraid to fail, and most importantly, fight for what you believe in.”

The senior class gift was then presented. A rendering of an interactive water feature was unveiled,described as an “Interactive Water Feature created with the new Lower School and Extended Day Building. Thoughtfully Supported by The Class of 2023. ‘Flowing to a new Beginning.’"

Awards included Valedictorian Jake Siesel, who gave his speech in both English and Spanish; Salutatorian Billy Diman; Head of School Award winner Bo Ziegler; and King Constantine Medal winner Tami Alli.

Doug Burgess was named the Downing/Williams Endowed Chair of Teaching Excellence for the 2023-24 academic year. The honor was established in 2018 with the philanthropic support of Nancy and Bruce Downing, parents of Yates ‘12; Charlotte ‘14; Tommy ‘17; and Michael ‘19. Endowed Chairs are synonymous with exceptional faculty and teaching excellence. The chair is awarded to a full-time faculty member who will hold this high distinction for one academic year. The recipient receives a stipend and professional development award.

Also recognized Friday:

–24 Global Studies Diploma recipients;

–11 legacy graduates who are children of alumni; and

–63 “lifers” who have attended PD since at least first grade.

Congratulations to the Class of 2023! Please see Commencement 2023 for more information.