Commencement 2016

June 14, 2016


La Lumiere School celebrated its 49th commencement on Friday, May 27, and was led by Headmaster Charles F. Clark, Ph.D. Former headmasters Lawrence Sullivan and Michael Kennedy were in attendance, along with the School’s next Headmaster, Adam Kronk, who begins his tenure this July.

Chris Balawender, a veteran faculty member who is retiring with more than 40 years at the school, delivered his commencement address to 53 graduates. His message was filled with gratitude and pride in the students and faculty. Chris encouraged the college-bound seniors to, “Find a passion. In college, sharpen and hone that passion. If you haven’t found a passion, college is a good place to find it. Try many courses until you find something that grabs you. Most importantly, if you love your work, it doesn’t feel like work, it becomes a vocation.” He closed his speech by paraphrasing General Douglas MacArthur and saying, “Old teachers never die; they just slowly fade from their students’ memories. And I assure you that with my last dying breath, I will be thinking about family, family, family, and La Lumiere has always been part of my family.”

Also speaking to the class of 2016 was Head Prefect, Mary Frances Eisenhauer, who said to her classmates, “The La Lumiere community is like a puzzle. Every one of us represents a small, unique piece that fits into a bigger picture. This picture honors the legacy of those who have come before us, the vision of those who are here now, and the promise of future Lakers. This picture of La Lumiere reveals our efforts to be the best we can in our character, scholarship, and faith. Our class feels a strong sense of pride and love for this school and all of its pieces. In my four years at La Lumiere School, I have been privileged to meet so many interesting individuals. My hope is that each of you finds the strength to pursue your purpose and to trust in the value of your place in this world.”

The School also awarded the following honors to outstanding seniors during the ceremony for distinguished achievement:

The Alumni Memorial Award: Nerissa Siwietz, Michigan City, Ind.Senior Award for Stellar Academic Performance: Rachael Yemc, Long Beach, Ind.
James R. Moore Scholar Athlete Award: Nerissa Siwietz, Michigan City, Ind. and Christian Vasquez, Portage, Ind.
Alan R. Hannan Unsung Hero Award: Mason Newbanks, Michigan City, Ind.
Trustees Award for Leadership Based on Character: Karalyn Knight, Beverly Shores, Ind.
Headmaster’s Award for Growth and Distinction: Ja’Monay Wise, Robbins, Ill. and Yuyang Zhang, Beijing, China
The One of Us Award: Mary Frances Eisenhauer, Beverly Shores, Ind.
Senior Award for Service to Younger Students: Mary Frances Eisenhauer, Beverly Shores, Ind.



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