Isidore Newman School held its 111th Commencement on May 29 at Tulane University’s McAlister Auditorium, where members of the Class of 2019 walked across the stage and transitioned from Newman seniors to Newman alumni.
After a procession of faculty, staff, administrators, and the 90 seniors in the Class of 2019, Head of School Dale M. Smith welcomed guests and delivered his remarks to begin the program. His remarks highlighted how far the seniors had come in the last 14 years, and noted that many of them began their educational journey at Newman in 2005 – a school year abruptly disrupted by Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Thirty-one of the seniors present were displaced by the storm, but returned to Newman to finish their education – a testament to the resiliency of New Orleanians and the families who call the city – and Newman – home.
Mr. Smith then introduced seniors Tabor Brewster and Sydney Gold, who were selected by their classmates to give the student addresses. Both speakers are known for their writing talent, insight, and wit, and both addresses were humorous and poignant expressions of simultaneous joy and trepidation at the momentous crossroads of graduation.
After the speeches, Head of Upper School Nowell Hesse ’99 presented awards and announced the First and Second Honor students, seniors with the highest cumulative average: Emma Winn Freeman and Audrey Gold Singer. The Class of 2019 then received their diplomas in turn from Mr. Smith and Board Chair Peter Sperling. Finally, Class Dean Anita Hedgepeth presented the members of the Class of 2019 to the assembled audience of parents, extended family, friends, and Newman faculty and staff.
We look forward to the future achievements of the Class of 2019, the School’s newest alumni, who join more than 6,000 Newman graduates currently living all over the world. We are confident that the students in this class are ready and well prepared for the next chapter in their lives. We will be watching for their achievements and hope that they will remain connected to their alma mater.