Pioneer grads encouraged to seize the moment

  • At the end of graduation Friday, Pioneer Valley Regional School students throw their caps into the air. Staff photo/Melina Bourdeau

  • Pioneer Valley Regional School Class of 2019 President Nathan Mousseau introduced the keynote speaker, Gina Johnson. Staff photo/Melina Bourdeau

  • The keynote speaker at Pioneer Valley Regional School’s graduation this year was Gina Johnson, who joked that her speech was in a thick binder. Staff photo/Melina Bourdeau

  • Cousins Sean Winslow, Madison Adams and Collin Winslow got together for a photo after Pioneer Valley Regional School’s graduation on Friday. Staff photo/Melina Bourdeau

  • Sister Avery Kelton and older brother Jacob Kelton met up after Pioneer Valley Regional School’s graduation for a headlock. Staff photo/Melina Bourdeau

  • Pioneer Valley Regional School’s Class of 2019 Valedictorian Grace Kasper receives her diploma Friday. Staff photo/Melina Bourdeau

Published: 6/7/2019 10:02:31 PM

NORTHFIELD — Sitting in the sun outside of the high school, moments before they received their diplomas, the graduates of Pioneer Valley Regional School were asked to contemplate greatness by the keynote speaker Gina Johnson.

“Think about your greatest moment,” Johnson said. “Was Garrett (Cotes)’s last-second shot to win the game, it? … Wyatt (Keith)’s 2,000 rushing yards? Or for Emma (Worth), when she landed the roles in ‘Rent,’ ‘Phantom of the Opera,’ ‘Wizard of Oz,’ or for sure the role in ‘Anne Frank’ has to be tops for her? Maybe you’re sitting here and saying, ‘This is my greatest moment.’”

She told the graduates that every day is a new chance to seize the moment. Although life may knock them down, they have to get back up.

Pioneer’s graduates were also encouraged to find out what they are capable of as they move on in their lives. Valedictorian Grace Kasper told her peers not to underestimate themselves.

“I think we’ve all had times where we didn’t think we were smart enough, good enough or capable enough, but I think it’s important we remember that we’ve also had times we’ve surprised ourselves,” Kasper said. “We discovered that we were able to accomplish something we previously believed impossible.”

Salutatorian Leah Fuess echoed the ideas of challenging oneself and not being afraid to fail.

“Don’t be afraid to do things that are hard for you or scary,” Fuess said. “The reward will come in time, you just have to wait for it. But don’t think that means you can stop working for it.”

Graduates

Madison Amanda Adams, Amara Estelle Balk, Brett Anton Bergstrom, Kaleb James Brown, Jacquilene Marie Collins, Jacob Aidan Comiskey, Andrew James Connelly, Garrett Thomas Cote, Elliana Rose Cox, Gavin Jonathan Lanoue Curtis, Drew Alan Denny, Blake Alexander Dobosz, Autumn Mae Flagg, Zackary Joseph Fox, Leah Colette Fuess, Jacob Robert Fuller, Michael Scott George, Hunter Jon-William Groth, Dalton Mallory Hanson, Kayleigh Marie Jackman, Avery Elizabeth Johnson, Cambria Devine Johnson-Brown, Grace Autumn Kasper, Wyatt Austin Keith, Avery Jane Kelton, Bridget Masten Kenney, Brian Patrick Killay, Leo Joseph Knight, Ethan Edmund Lanoie, Olivia Grace Lanoie, Maizey Kahrin Larange, Noah David LaRocque, Matthew Owen Lively, John Brewster Loud, Cameron Todd Hartford Lounder, Scott Alan McDonough, Kiana Rochelle McGraw, Nathan William Mousseau, Gabriel Owen Norwood, Gabriel Hannan Pacheco, Scott Isadore Perlberg, Angela Rose Porrovecchio, Aurel Thomas Pydych, Faith Snow Rathbun, Lindsay Jean Rose, Olivia Paige Rowe, Alexander Fredric Royer, Samantha Isabelle Russell, Hannah Marie Sliva, Alexander Harold Taylor, Annika Katherine Tormanen, Ryan Douglas Underwood, Austin Jaden Walker, Jake Anthony Wallace, Ivy Lynn Watroba, Emma Jean Worth and Rylie Marie Zager.

Awards and scholarships

Madison Adams — Atkinson Family Practice Scholarship, Retired Educators Association of Massachusetts, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Amara Balk — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, TAB Senior Leader Award from Training Active Bystanders, French Club Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Kaleb Brown — Owen Clarke Foundation Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Jacob Comiskey — Fortnightly Scholarship, Ned Green Scholarship, Northfield Fire Dept. Floyd M. Dunnell Jr. Memorial Scholarship, Northfield Kiwanis Club Jonathan (Jake) Mayberry Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Andrew Connelly — Excellence in Service to Envirothon, Outstanding Achievement in Physical Education, Student of the Month for October, Leonard Bruno Memorial Scholarship, Owen Clarke Foundation Scholarship, Ethel F. Jackson Memorial Scholarship, Principal’s Citizenship Award, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship, Perfect Attendance Award.

Garrett Cote — Silver “P” Award for National Honor Society, Fortnightly Scholarship, Ethel F. Jackson Memorial Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Elliana Cox — Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Gavin Curtis — Excellence in Band, John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Outstanding Achievement in Engineering Design, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Drew Denny — Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Autumn Flagg — Outstanding Achievement in Band, Kathryn Bassett Memorial Award, Bernardston Kiwanis Club Scholarship, Grover/Barnes Award, Pioneer Valley Regional School Instrumental Music Award.

Leah Fuess — Salutatorian, John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Fortnightly Scholarship, Northfield Fire Dept. Floyd M. Dunnell Jr. Memorial Scholarship, Pioneer Valley Regional School Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Jacob Fuller — Abigail Stratton Award, Sidney Thayer Scholarship.

Dalton Hanson — John amd Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Theodore Cronyn Award, Foundation for Educational Excellence & The Greenfield Co-operative Bank Scholarship, PVRS Student Council Scholarship, Perfect Attendance Award.

Kayleigh Jackman — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Stephen F. Balk Award, Bernardston Veterans’ Organization Scholarship, Mary Stuart Rogers Foundation Scholarship.

Avery Johnson — Excellence in English 12, Most Improved in Financial Literacy, Silver “P” Award for National Honor Society, Owen Clarke Foundation Scholarship, Erving PTO Scholarship, Thomas J. Hurley Nurses’ Scholarship, Women of the Moose Scholarship.

Cambria Johnson-Brown — Owen Clarke Foundation Award.

Grace Kasper — Valedictorian, Excellence in Elementary Statistics A & B, Excellence in Spanish 5, John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Outstanding Achievement in English 12, TAB Senior Leader Award for Training Active Bystanders, Kathy Bonnett Memorial Award, Leonard Bruno Memorial Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Wyatt Keith — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Outstanding Achievement in Introduction to Medicine, Ethel F. Jackson Memorial Scholarship, Thaddeus M. Ostrowski Memorial Award, Pioneer Valley Regional School Scholarship.

Avery Kelton — Makenzie Goode Memorial Athletic Scholarship, Greenfield Lodge of Elks Scholarship Duane A. Nelson, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Bridget Kenney — Owen Clarke Foundation Award, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Brian Killay — Anita L. Pike Memorial Scholarship, Warwick Community Scholarship.

Leo Knight — Excellence in Chorus, John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Cathy Hawkins-Harrison Music Service Award for Chorus.

Ethan Lanoie — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship.

Olivia Lanoie — Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Maizey Larange — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship.

Noah LaRocque — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship.

Matthew Lively — Gerald and Edward McGowan Memorial Award, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

John Loud — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Student of the Month for January/February, Harold A. and Elizabeth C. Newton Scholarship, Pioneer Valley Regional School Scholarship, Principal’s Achievement Award, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Cameron Lounder — Most Improved in Physical Education, Alice, Eric and Oscar Anderson Scholarship, Owen Clarke Foundation Scholarship.

Scott McDonough — Ethel F. Jackson Memorial Scholarship, Andrew R. St. Hilaire Memorial Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Kiana McGraw — Excellence in AP Literature, John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Outstanding Achievement in AP Calculus, Silver “P” Award for National Honor Society, Student of the Month for March/April, TAB Senior Leader Award from Training Active Bystanders, Kathy Bonnett Memorial Award, Northfield Kiwanis Club Walter F. Asseng Memorial Scholarship, PVRS National Honor Society Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship, Lucy Wilder Memorial Humanitarian Award.

Nathan Mousseau — Excellence in AP Calculus, Excellence in Physics, John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Outstanding Achievement in Intercultural Foods and Advanced Nutrition, Silver “P” Award for National Honor Society, Bernardston Kiwanis Club Scholarship, Leonard Eastman Award, Ethel F. Jackson Memorial Scholarship, Tyler Family Memorial Award, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship, Fred R. Whitcomb Scholarship.

Gabriel Norwood — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Angela Porrovecchio — George A. Warner Award.

Aurel Pydych — Most Improved in Band, Bete Fog Nozzle Hockey Scholarship, Cathy Hawkins-Harrison Music Service Award for Band.

Faith Rathbun — Foundation for Educational Excellence Robert S. Coy Art Award.

Lindsay Rose — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Bernardston Kiwanis Club Scholarship, George A. Warner Fund Scholarship.

Olivia Rowe — Excellence in Introduction to Medicine, Silver “P” Award for National Honor Society, Owen Clarke Foundation Scholarship, Ethel F. Jackson Memorial Scholarship, Northfield Kiwanis Club F. Sumner Turner Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Alexander Royer — Dean Beaudoin Memorial Scholarship, Alfred Orlens Citizenship Award, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship, Pioneer Valley Regional School Scholarship.

Samantha Russell — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, TAB Senior Leader Award from Training Active Bystanders.

Hannah Sliva — Most Improved in Chorus, Owen Clarke Foundation Award, Evelyn G. Lawley Award, PVRS Theatre Service Award.

Alexander Taylor — John and Abigail Adams MCAS Scholarship, Principal’s Potential Award.

Annika Tormanen — Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Ryan Underwood — Outstanding Achievement in Physics.

Jake Wallace — Jason Peters Memorial Scholarship, Pioneer Valley Regional School Scholarship, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Ivy Watroba — Excellence in Visual Arts.

Emma Worth — Excellence in French 4, Outstanding Achievement in Chorus, Foundation for Educational Excellence Richard Martin Theatre Award, PVRS Young Musician Award, Fred W. Wells Fund Scholarship.

Rylie Zager — Friends of Gill Bernice Keech Scholarship.


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