Upper School Awards Recognize Tartan Achievement and Excellence in Academic Pursuits

The St. Margaret’s senior and junior classes and their pursuit of excellence in academics, community and athletics were celebrated and honored at the 2020 Upper School Awards Ceremony, which took place via Zoom this year.
The Upper School faculty awarded academic book prizes from distinguished colleges and universities defined by qualities represented in those schools, academic department awards of distinction and special senior awards that were presented to students by faculty who wrote personal commendations of each student.
The service of many Upper School students through leadership groups was also recognized, including Admission Ambassadors, Associated Student Body, Honor Committee, Peer Counselors, and Tartan Inclusivity & Diversity Education.
“We have come together to recognize those junior and senior students who, daily, model our mission through their outstanding accomplishments in learning, leadership, and service,” Upper School Principal Jeneen Graham said. “The importance of recognizing achievement, of recognizing it as a valid pursuit by itself and in of itself, lies not in the achievement alone. What is more important is the learning and habits of mind that develop as we strive for excellence in these important areas and carry those habits through lives of purpose.”
Though the awards ceremony was changed to accommodate remote learning, the event had many of the same formalities. The ceremony started with an invocation by Father James Livingston, and a memorable national anthem was sung by senior Lorelei Blau. The ceremony concluded with a singing of the alma mater led by St. Margaret’s Director of Choral Music Stacey Miles. As students were recognized, their photos were displayed on the screen.
The complete list of honorees follows:

Senior Awards
The Founder’s Award – Recipient: Lara Hairapetian. Awarded to the senior who has maintained the highest grade point average in the class. Presented by Upper School Principal Jeneen Graham.

Salutatorian Award – Recipient: Serena Carson. Awarded to the senior who has maintained the second highest grade point average in the class. Presented by Upper School Assistant Principal James Harris.

The Father Ernest D. SIllers Award – Recipient: Thomas Hughes. Awarded to the senior who has set an example of overall achievement, combining an excellent academic record with exemplary service to the school, citizenship and leadership. Presented by Upper School science teacher and department chair Edmund Herlihy.

The Board of Trustees’ Award – Recipient: Samantha Hasani. Awarded to the senior who has grown the most both as a person and as a student, and has taken advantage of the many opportunities for involvement. Presented by Head of School Will Moseley.

St. Margaret’s Award – Recipient: Logan Burke. Awarded to the senior whose academic work is distinguished by the love of scholarship and who, by example, has contributed most to the academic morale of the school. Presented by Upper School English teacher Pete Clark.

PTF Service Award – Recipient: Whitney Kaemmer. Awarded to the senior whose leadership emobides the spirit of selflessness through commitment and involvement. Presented by Upper School advisor and athletics assistant Jill Fincher

Faculty Achievement Award – Recipient: Lauryn Wilson. Awarded to the senior who has maintained high academic standards through an exceptional combination of achievement, resilience and perseverance. Presented by Upper School advisor and athletics assistant Jill Fincher

Faculty Plate – Recipient: Angela Mendoza Ortega. Awarded to the senior who has made the most of his or her St. Margaret’s experience and who clearly manifests the Latin inscription on the award plate, suo Marte or “by one’s own prowess,” in his or her years of endeavor in the St. Margaret’s community. Presented by Director of Orchesta Gene Wie.

Principal’s Cup – Recipient: Serena Carson. Awarded to the senior who has grown to exemplify the ideals of Honor, Diligence and Decency. The senior has questioned the application and meaning of these ideals in his or her involvement at St. Margaret’s as a student and as a leader, and has made this school a better place by living life courageously, consistently and compassionately. Presented by Upper School Director of Community Life Lora Allison.

Academic Departmental Honors
A Departmental Book is awarded to seniors who have achieved excellence in an academic discipline.

Latin, presented by Alexandra Jennings: Chloe Miller
Chinese, presented by Esther Hsu: Carson C de Baca
Spanish, presented by Bryan Sullivan: Cami Cassinelli
Computer Science, presented by Lynn Ozonian: Liv Hale
History, presented by James Harris: Shea Hueston
English, presented by Blake Reemstma: Nadia Farjami
Math, presented by Elizabeth O’Shea: Shawn Chen
Science, presented by Edmund Herlihy: Private student
Performing Arts, presented by Darcy Rice: Marek Magana
Visual Arts, presented by Jesse Standlea: Taylor Silver

Junior College Book Awards Presented by Director of College Counseling Roland Allen

The George Washington University Book – Recipient: Jackson Adelman. Awarded to a junior who embodies the George Washington drive and spirit, specifically with their academic excellence, leadership outside of the classroom, diversity of thought, and ability to put knowledge into action.

The Wellesley Book Award – Recipient: Seychelle Balog. Awarded to a young woman who has been a top scholar in high school as well as a talented performer in extracurricular activities.

The Harvard Book Prize – Recipient: Kaelyn Dunnell. Awarded to an outstanding junior who exhibits superior academic, personal and extracurricular achievements.

The Kenyon College Book – Recipient: Thomas Colglazier. Awarded to the member of the junior class who best embodies the central tenets of the liberal arts—a high level of intellectual engagement, creativity and commitment to community.

The University of Pennsylvania Book – Recipient: Espen Garner. Awarded to a high school junior who best exemplifies the qualities and characteristics of Benjamin Franklin—a scholar, innovator and server of the community.

The Princeton Book – Recipient: Sarah Pence. Awarded to an outstanding junior who exhibits intellectual promise and academic excellence; exemplary service or extracurricular activities; and outstanding personal character.

The Saint Lawrence University Book – Recipient: Katherine Collier. Awarded to a junior who, like the St. Lawrence University community, values a commitment to the service of others.

The Smith College Book – Recipient: Italivi Diaz. Awarded to an outstanding junior female who exemplifies academic achievement, leadership qualities, and concern for others.

The Williams College Book – Recipient: Zachary Kratzer. Awarded to a junior who has demonstrated intellectual leadership and has made a significant contribution to the extracurricular life of the school.

The Yale Book – Recipient: Evan Lee. Awarded to a junior who demonstrates “lux et veritas,” enlightenment and truth, the motto of Yale College, combining outstanding personal character—the “lux” – with outstanding intellectual promise, the “veritas.”

Dominic Ondryas Memorial Award – Recipient: Ulises Ramirez Ruiz. Awarded to the junior who has exercised leadership during his or her years at St. Margaret’s and who has shown a willingness to improve the community and the world by leading others through personal example and commitment.
Athletics Awards
Jon Balak Award – Recipients: Charlotte Jones and Sean Sullivan. Presented by Director of Athletics Patrick Bendzick.

Athletes of the Year: Recipients: Campbell Case and Will Kenner. Presented by girls lacrosse coach Molly Stevens and football coach Kory Minor.
An independent preschool through grade 12 college-preparatory day school in Orange County, California
St. Margaret’s Episcopal School
31641 La Novia Avenue
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675
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