Class of 2020 Tributes

It is the virtue of community that is most prominent when I think about the Class of 2020. Your Middle School teachers remember how you viewed one another as allies, moved between peer groups and developed deep friendships. They told me that even when you drifted apart or developed different interests, you still supported one another and had each other’s back. You gave one another space and offered encouragement as you figured out who you would become and as a result, as you entered high school you flourished as academics, debaters, singers, activists, dancers, athletes, musicians, and actors. Yet even with such accomplishments, you showed us that being competitive and supportive aren’t mutually exclusive ideas.  Students,  it is your empathy and genuine support for others that is the hope that our world needs. We are so proud of you! Congratulations! – Ms. Greene

I have been humbled to work with such ambitious and talented student leaders in this senior class! I can’t wait to see what you all do next! – Mel Pubil

 

 

You are all graduating Seniors now, but when I first met you in my first year teaching at ACS you were 7th Grade Middle Schoolers! You taught me about what made ACS such a special school, what it meant to be a Viper; you set the benchmark. – Brent Raven

 

I remember when some of you entered the music room for the first time in KG1. You were so adorable and it feels like that time was only moments ago. More of you joined our ACS family throughout your elementary years and I so loved being your music teacher. I met new students as I attended your band and choir concerts and your drama performances and I watched you mature and grow as artists. My pride for you swelled as I watched you blossom under the guidance of your wonderful teachers. I see you now as young adults and I can’t wait to see and hear about the amazing things you will accomplish in your future. – Ms. Brooks

This was the first group of kids I taught at ACS. ENGLISH 10 RULES! – GIRDNER

 

 

I taught many of you in sixth grade. It was such a fun year. I still have vivid memories to WWW in Ephesus. It has been amazing watching this group grow up and become empathetic leaders. – Ms. Lawson

 

I had the pleasure of teaching so many of you both in Middle School Choir, as well as in High School! What an awesome group you are. Having the opportunity to watch you grow and change and learn over so many years has been such a gift and you have made an imprint on my heart forever! Thank you for letting me be a part of your journey for a little while. No matter where you go or what you choose to do in the years to come I hope that you never forget how much your ACS teachers care about you and are so proud of you! You always have a home with us. – Mrs. Miller

My Grade 5 kids are graduating! What a wonderful time we had. It’s been such a privilege seeing you in the hallways growing up and maturing into such a talented and beautiful group of kids. Be sure to come back and visit! – Ms. Zuhdi

 

I have only been at ACS for two years, but I respect this senior class so much. Yes, you persevered during historic times at the end of the school year. But you were also an extremely talented group of students – academically, musically, artistically, athletically...so well-rounded! We will miss you so much. Congratulations to all of you. – Mr. Dickinson

 

Dear Seniors, You were 6th graders when I came to ACS. I know quite a few of you through coaching. I wish the best for you in the coming years. This will be a year that you will always remember (as will we all). You will persevere and you will have a different way of looking at the world. Good luck to you all. – Mr. Bulluck

 

To the seniors I have had the pleasure of getting to know these past two years, thank you for sharing your energy, intelligence and kindness. I have thoroughly enjoyed our short stint working together and I certainly hope our paths cross again in the future. In the meantime, congratulations and best of luck as you embark on your next adventure! – Mrs. DeSimone

 

My dear IB seniors, YOU are the most unique small group I’ve ever taught; you were like a “bittersweet symphony” in my class! True, you gave me some hard times the past two years, but I was impressed with your curiosity, energy and attitude that you brought, especially during the last periods: a taste of a joyful environment. You will truly be missed. Cannot wait to see you at “Kafarnaum 2.0”!!! To all seniors, it’s been a pleasure to know you and I am looking forward to seeing each one of you pursuing your passion and succeeding in your future life. Wishing you all the very best, Mabrouk! – Mrs. Mikati

SENIORS! You did it, y’all! So proud of your work throughout this school year and many others. Although I’ve only known you for a short time, it has become obvious how amazing your impact on ACS has been! Thank you for welcoming me in with open arms and being such a great example for younger students. You are full of energy and joy and I cannot wait to see you all out conquering the world. As you head out on your next adventure, try new things, take risks and make the best memories. You all rock! – Mrs. Moog

What a special group you are. I have so many fond memories of your middle school years... Thank you for all the energy and laughs. You continue to make us proud and model our core values. ACS will miss you, come back and visit us often. Once a Viper, always a Viper! – Ms. Delaire

 

If there ever was a cohort at ACS who could go through this extremely difficult experience with grace and positivity, it is you! You were in grade 6 when I started at ACS and have always been such a terrific, caring, and open group of friends and classmates. I am proud to have known you for the past 7 years and feel so lucky to have my daughter be counted as one of you. I know I am lucky to have taught you and known you! Thank you. – Ms. Foss

As a first-year International and ACS employee, I was welcomed by the Seniors. Throughout the year I had the pleasure of getting to know a number of you through sharing a laugh, friendly competition, coaching, or just a hello in the hallways. You have been positive role models for my 9th Graders and I know each of you will achieve all that you put your mind to. All the best as you continue your journey. – Mr. Cadogan

Seniors, we started our ACS HS careers together, and I feel like we have had a special bond since we learned the ropes together. I am going to miss you all tremendously, but I can’t wait to hear about your next adventures and achievements after you leave ACS. Please keep in touch. You will always have a home at ACS. – Ms. Gaebler

 

The seniors that have passed through the band room and hung out with me have brought me an enormous amount of joy. Listening to you laugh, practice, perform and just be plain old silly in the band room has been my pleasure and I feel fortunate to know you. Thank you for all that you shared, I’m going to miss you! – Ms. Ramsey

 

Unfortunately, I’ve only had limited Senior exposure because this is my first year at ACS. As such, I feel like I’ve missed some opportunities to get to know and build relationships with these intriguing students. However. The Senior hallway is right outside my classroom. So although I might not know some students by face, I have heard some things that will stay with me forever. – Mr. Syrenne

Although this is only my first year at ACS, the seniors have had a huge impact on me, both personally and professionally. They are motivated, compassionate, and strive for excellence in all that they do. I wish you all nothing but the best and look forward to seeing what positive mark you will have on our world. – Mrs. Mapstone

 

It’s always an honor to work and see a class through to graduation. This class is the first class I started with coming to ACS and I loved every moment. Glad to be part of your send-off! – Amy Daraiseh

 

Curious, Compassionate, Resilient. I have absolutely loved your curiosity about academics, human nature, and the possibilities for the future. The unusual end to your high school career further revealed your commitment to wondering, questioning and reflecting on who you are and how your knowledge, skills and experiences will help you move forward. It has been wonderful to laugh with you, learn with you, and watch you adjust your expectations as you dream big. I can’t wait to see where your dreams take you! – Ms. Shrestha

One of the main reasons I will never forget my first day at ACS was because of the Class of 2020. They were so receptive and friendly with me since day one. Even though I only had the opportunity to work with them during one year, that was enough for me to understand what an amazing group of young adults they are. I wish you all the best in your future studies and I hope you come back to visit your old teachers. I will leave you with a quote I once heard from Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson that says: “When you are good at something you tell everybody, but when you are great at something everybody tells you!” So go out there and make everybody tell you!! – Mr. Diaz

Seniors, transitioning to a new school can be challenging, especially when asked to take over for someone else. I remember walking into the room for the first time, awaiting your arrival, cautiously optimistic, yet unsure what and who was waiting for me. Over the past 8 months, I have discovered that you are a group of confident, intelligent, articulate, funny, and caring individuals who have consistently challenged me (that is a good thing) to grow beside you. Thank you for the earnest discussions, creative ideas, critical thinking, and witty banter throughout the year. I have honestly learned a lot from you. I am certain that you will leave ACS with the skills, intellect, creativity, and grit to leave a positive, lasting influence on the world. – Mr. Mapstone

Yes…I’m barefoot as I write these final, fleeting words to a group of students I have come to cherish over the past seven years here at ACS. Obviously, my connections with you have been bonded through various portals and I have come to appreciate all that you offer our community and especially to me. Your honesty, intelligence, humor, resiliency, good faith and extraordinary gift for hope will hold you in good stead. Obviously, this isn’t the way we wanted to see you leave the Land of the Vipers; alas, we have to play the cards we’re dealt. As you leave the comforting bubble of ACS, go forth and do awesome things. I refuse to say ‘Good Bye’ and I’m buoyed by the fact that I know many of our paths will cross somewhere down the line. So…until the next time, Class of 2020. Oh…and I love you, Sprout! – Mr. Foss

Having taught so many of you over the years, I am excited for you all and the path that you will follow next year and beyond. Your compassion for one another, the achievements you have accomplished in all pillars and ACS values that you live by have meant the connections you have made to teachers, and students at ACS are positive and memorable. Thank you for your curiosity, energy and kindness as we have crossed paths, over the years. Good luck and continue to do amazing things! – Ms. Paterson

My first group of Seniors who were my Starbucks minions...now I’ll have to retrain the next group to memorize mine and Ms. Donison’s order (you know Coconut Latte and Americano with an extra shot). My Shake Shack girls, I will miss our endless conversations about the most random things like Oreos dipped in Peanut Butter (GAME CHANGER!). On a serious note, I know this was not the send-off you imagined but as my second favorite boss Oprah said it best “Turn your wounds into wisdom.” – Ms. Dimple

Thank you for welcoming me back with open arms. I was delighted to see how much you’d grown as students and as a class. It has been an honor to have many of you in classes and on stage. These past few months have shown how resilient and adaptive you are; not because you did everything perfectly with remote learning, but because you stayed with it and kept trying and refining. Go off, do good things, and be sure to tell us about it. – Ms. Dertian

I have coached many of you since elementary school. You always work hard and attack the challenge. Class of 2020 is amazing! Go Vipers! – Coach Rodgers

 

 

The Class of 2020 for me marked a new transition to a new school, and I am so grateful to have gotten to know all of you, not just my A-E children over these years. You made my first four years at ACS fantastic. I’m at a loss of words to describe how much I am going to miss you all and how I hate that I can’t give you a hug or a pinch of goodbye. But please know that you all are so differently talented that you will make your own way through this ever changing world. Good luck and remember to always remember who you are, and whose you are. =) – Ms. McDade

We all entered the ACS HS arena together 4 years ago—you as awkward freshmen with your energy and excitement and me with...well my sarcasm and Canadian accent. (Sorry, not sari - ha!) However, we are ALL leaving better people—more mature, ready to take on the next phase in our lives, and definitely more aware and compassionate. This class of 2020 has inspired me in so many ways and I am better having taught and known you—you are a beautiful group of human beings with huge hearts (and the integrity and determination to go with it—a deadly combination). I can’t wait to hear about your adventures and all of the good you will do in whatever new communities you find yourselves in. 
Don’t forget to always try to be better (people) and never forget to find your own something to say. 
Em-dash count = 4 – Ms. Bond

It was a pleasure to have met some of you during my Spanish classes or in extracurricular activities. Your journey at ACS may stop here, but every ending has a new beginning. That’s why I am sad to see you go but I am also so excited to see you all embark on the next chapter in life as you sail into a sea of opportunities. I am sure that you will make the very best of all you’re been taught. Always remember that you are all unique and talented. If you set your mind, you can achieve anything. I will miss you, and I can’t wait to hear about your success stories. 
Congratulations, buena suerte mis queridos estudiantes. – Sra. Jiménez

I have been so lucky to work at ACS for 8 years, and have met such incredible students during that time. One activity that I remember with great fondness is the MS Lip Dub that we created in 2014. This graduating year is the last group of ACS students that were involved in that bonding performance. It is so fantastic to see the sweet little faces of the sixth grade students in this video – who are now our seniors – smiling and dancing together. I am sure that they will always remember their time as a part of the Viper community as I do, with great love. – Ms. Reddick

It has been a great joy to have taught so many of you in the three years I have been at ACS. During this time I have seen you grow, laugh, cry, learn, and pick yourself up after a tough day/game. This inspires me and gives me so much hope about the future. I look forward to hearing from you as you share news of your new adventures. Class of 2020, stand up for justice and speak out against bigotry, racial injustice, and inequality. “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.” (Martin Luther King) – Mr. Harris

Seniors, congratulations to all of you. You are making history. We are so proud of you. All the best wishes for your bright future! – Ms. Muhammad

 

 

Seniors! During the last 7 years I have taught and coached many of you and your spirit and “joie de vivre” has always been a strong part of your cohort identity. Thank you for being who you are and hold on to that dynamism as you now go on to new adventures. Congratulations! – Mrs. Macaulay

 

I am so incredibly proud of you! You have grown so much over the past few years and have developed into such amazing young adults. Remember that even life’s really challenging problems can be “fun” with the right mindset. You have the tools that you need to solve whatever comes your way. I am honored to have been your teacher, and I wish you all nothing but the best in the next chapter of your adventure. Congratulations! – Mrs. Swanson

Though I only taught a handful of you during your junior and senior years, I had the privilege to teach a lot of you during your ninth and tenth grade years. I wish all of you the best wherever your journey takes you next, I think the past few months have taught you how to cope with the unexpected and make the best out of it. To my PCRF officers/ladies, it was wonderful seeing you grow, having your own opinions and building your personalities. Best of luck class of 2020. – Mrs. Shtayyeh

It has been a pleasure teaching so many of you over the past four years. I have enjoyed watching you mature and grow into curious, compassionate and strong individuals. Your excitement for learning was always so refreshing and your million questions challenged me to extend your learning in ways I had never thought of before. Those times where we “got off topic” have been some of my most memorable moments.  It was a joy getting to know you and I am incredibly proud of what you have accomplished. My hope is that you continue to stay curious, advocate for yourself and look out for each other.  I am excited to see where the next couple of years takes you and stay in touch. – Ms. Chisholm

CONGRATULATIONS, everyone! I am so very lucky that I have gotten to watch you grow into the wonderful young Men and Women you have all become.  I wish you all the best as you leave these halls and venture off to discover what life has in store for you. – Ms. Burch

 

Congratulations to a wonderful class! I am so proud of you. You will certainly be missed--always stay in touch! – Jasmine Elshear

I’m so proud of how this class has been able to navigate difficult circumstances.  This group of students has shown a level of resiliency never seen before.  In my short time at ACS so  far, I feel privileged to have witnessed your journey.  I know that you will continue to be accomplished students, do great things, and be great people.  Congratulations! – Mr. Abraham

 

Congratulations to the class of 2020! I have had the pleasure of watching many of you grow throughout the years both in my classes and in extracurricular settings. I have been impressed with your maturity, industriousness  and creativity, especially during these trying times.  I wish you all a wonderful future beyond the walls of ACS, and always remember “Learning is the only thing the mind never exhausts, never fears, and never regrets.” —Leonardo da Vinci – Ms. Mazzuchin

Dear Seniors, some of you have been my very first few students as eight graders when I first joined ACS and I am so very proud of each one of you for navigating your way so smoothly and courageously throughout these difficult circumstances. What you accomplished is just the beginning of a journey as you have much more to achieve in life; very rightly said by Winston Churchill “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Ms. Taj

Dear Class of 2020, It has been a pleasure to have witnessed your development over a number of years and to get to know so many of you. You contributed to the overall success of the ACS Athletics program and you set high standards which resulted in so much success at MESAC (against much larger schools). That true Viper spirit saw you through. You are such a talented group of young adults….musicians, dancers, singers, athletes as well as having outstanding academics results. The motto of my hometown Leith in Scotland is “Persevere”. In these unprecedented times make sure you persevere and I wish you every success in your future endeavors. Keep in touch! – Mr. Mac