Excellence, Justice, and Honor

On Friday last week, Upper School students were recognized for their academic achievement at the 2022 Cum Laude Society induction ceremony. Eleven juniors and 13 seniors joined last year's inductees. The Cum Laude Society is a national organization with 337 chapters in private and public secondary schools that “recognizes academic achievement for the purpose of promoting excellence, justice, and honor…areté, diké, timé.”

Along with the students that were newly inducted into the Cum Laude Society, veteran teacher and head of the science department Scott Stein was chosen as this year’s honorary faculty member. Senior Nia Hodges, Stein’s advisee and a member of the society herself, shared a tribute to Stein acknowledging his profound impact “uplifting this community for decades.”

Full list of Cum Laude Students

Inducted as juniors

Amanda Cooney
Samuel Ellis Halfpenny
Nia Odette Hodges
Alisa Yufei Jia
Gabriela N. Leon-Palfrey
Madeline J. Mahoney
Claire Ruth Mollen
Charles David Norton
Lucy C. Pearson
Anthony Joseph Regli
Isaac Ryder Schapiro
Stephanie Christine Scheuermann
Whitney Deering Taylor

Juniors Inducted this year
Hans Holbrook Bode
Jack Gaghan
Fallon Marie George 
Lillian Marie Hall
Grace Kelly Hannigan
Yichen Huang
Daniel James O'Connor
Samantha Lisette Simon
Qimou Song
Nathalie Kennedy Taylor
Winslow Bailey Tracy
Seniors Inducted this year
Hua Bai
Chloe Ann Brundin 
Chandler Faith Fattah
Cameron Golden 
Lauren Elise Gregson
Tana Huixin Liu 
Alexa Faith Rhodes 
Kayla Morgan Runkel
Eliza Romig Russell
Elizabeth Spaulding Shoup
Grayson David Wade
Hoatian Yang

Nia Hodge's Remarks: 

Hello Everyone, 

It is my greatest honor and privilege to introduce this year’s honorary Cum Laude inductee who has been one of the most steadfast and memorable teachers during my high school experience at SCH. 

Many could argue that the arrival of this pandemic in the Spring of 2020—swiftly accompanied by quarantines, N-95s, and social distancing—fully disrupted the “homeostasis” of this community. No longer could we gather for assembly, or eat in close proximity with one another. During the weeks of online learning, we quickly became accustomed to strained conversations through Zoom or Google Meets rather than carefree waves in the hallways. As upperclassmen, we felt our academic, extracurricular, and personal struggles amplified tenfold in isolation. The relatively stable equilibrium of this community, the sense of belonging that had embraced us for many years, felt out of balance. 

When thinking about this lack of balance, I am reminded of Claude Bernard, a 19th century physiologist known in the biological and medical fields as the “Father of Homeostasis.” Bernard could explain homeostasis far better than I ever could, but I will briefly define it as the controlled stability of the internal, chemical, and physical conditions of the body. Without this careful internal balance, we succumb to the external stimuli which surround us. 

But for those of us who were fortunate enough to have this teacher during their junior or senior year, walking into his classroom (or entering his Google Meet) transported us into a different and brighter world. No matter how bleak the future seemed, we found comfort in the overgrown plants near the window, the baby Yoda on his desk, or even his “hilarious” biology-inspired jokes. No matter the day, he takes the time to ask each and every student how they’re doing before class begins, and makes himself available during SAS for questions about homework, independent study, or the latest scientific articles. In a time riddled with instability, his scientific curiosity and devotion to his students have given us all a sense of stability that we never could have imagined possible.  

This teacher challenges us—there is no doubt about that. He believes in learning by doing, making mistakes, and learning from them—all while laughing along the way. His classes teach resilience, a virtue that has been invaluable to juniors and seniors as we navigate the last few years of high school and to all of us as we move through this pandemic. Most importantly, he makes sure that our classes integrate current issues within the scientific and global community, like COVID or vaccinations. He understands that the ethical and moral implications of scientific discovery are just as important to the balance of young minds as the discovery itself. 

For decades, he has uplifted this community, and it is my honor to introduce my advisor for almost 4 years, and my biology teacher for almost 2 years now:  Mr. Stein.

 

Photo caption (L to R):

  • FRONT ROW: Qimou Song '23, Yichen Huang '23, Samantha Simon '23, Grace Hannigan '23, Winslow Tracy '23, Lillian Hall '23, Hans Bode '23
  • SECOND ROW: Hoatian Yang '22, Jack Gaghan '23, Fallon George '23, Natalie Taylor '23, Daniel O'Connor '23
  • THIRD ROW: Cameron Golden '22, Elizabeth Shoup '22, Tana Liu '22, Eliza Russell '22, Hua Bai '22, Grayson Wade '22
  • FOURTH ROW: Alexa Rhodes '22, Kayla Runkel '22, Chloe Brundin '22, Chandler Fattah '22, Lauren Gregson '22
  • FIFTH ROW: Amanda Cooney '22, Whitney Taylor '22, Gabriela Leon-Palfrey '22, Madeline Mahoney '22, Anthony Regli '22
  • TOP ROW: Charles Norton '22, Lucy Pearson '22, Claire Mollen '22, Nia Hodges '22, Stephanie Scheuermann '22, Isaac (Zach) Schapiro '22, Samuel Halfpenny '22
  • MISSING: Alisa Jia '22

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