By Mirika Jambudi (IV) On Wednesday, September 30, the Upper School gathered together in Hauser and over Zoom to celebrate student achievements and exceptional academic effort in the 2019-2020 school year.
The ceremony started with recognizing the Form VI students who were distinguished for their scores on last year’s PSAT/NMSQT exam by the National Merit Scholarship Program. This year, thirty-three Pingry students were named National Merit Commended Students, a significant increase from last year. A total of fifteen seniors were recognized as National Merit Semifinalists, allowing them the chance to advance in the selection process and potentially become finalists in the spring. These seniors were Noah Bergam, Joseph Castagno, Monica Chan, Zara Jacob, Rhea Kapur, Aneesh Karuppur, Dean Koenig, Jemma Kushen, Julian Lee, Justin Li, Guanyun Liang, Helen Liu, Katherine Overdeck, Eva Schiller, and Avidan Shah.
Following these distinctions, Upper School Director, Ms. Chatterji, presented the Citizenship Prize, which is given to one student in each grade who best represents the Honor Code’s spirit. Afterward, the Faculty Prize was awarded to students who showed dedication and commitment to their school work during the past academic school year. Finally, the Scholarship Prize was awarded to the student(s) with the highest GPA in each grade.
Next, seniors excelling in math and science were recognized with awards from the respective department. The Rensselaer Mathematics and Science Award and the Whitlock Prize for Math were among some of the awards given.
As per tradition, Mr. Levinson and Dr. Dinkins went on to present the College Book Awards. Each award is given to a senior class member who best meets the selection criteria provided by the particular college. Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Mount Holyoke, Penn, Princeton, Smith, Wellesley, Williams, and Yale were represented this year.
On behalf of the English Department, Dr. Dickerson announced the winners of the annual Justin Society writing contest. Students submitted their entries last spring, which the English Department then reviewed. Writers and poets from each grade received awards for their creative writing, poetry, memoir, and more.
The annual Fall Awards ceremony is a celebration within the Pingry community of student achievement, excellence, and honor. It serves to recognize the efforts that every individual puts into school every day. The Pingry community looks forward to another year of student achievement and hard work, and congratulates all the students honored at the ceremony.