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5 Tewksbury Students Graduate From Austin Prep June 4

Jun 14, 2016 10:49AM ● By Theresa Gilman

(Editor's Note: this information was provided by Austin Prep.)

Emma Tilley of Billerica did something different for her valedictory remarks at the Austin Preparatory School class of 2016 graduation on Saturday, June 4.

She asked her 140 classmates to contribute their words of wisdom in the form of memories or advice, and presented the “Commencement Speech of the Class of 2016.” The remarks were a gift to family members and teachers – a reflection of everything the graduates have learned so far along their journey. 

“College is a place full of new people and experiences, but make sure you stay true to yourself because you can change the world,” Emma said. “There’s nothing cooler than being passionate about something and owning it … 100 percent of the time, passion is so much better than not caring.”

Keynote speaker Joseph Sciacca Jr., of Haverhill, editor-in-chief of the Boston Herald, said two challenges lay ahead for the class of 2016: leadership and service.

“Leadership without service is empty,” he said. “Consider what it means to lead … be confident enough to be the force for change.”

Sciacca is a graduate of Austin Prep class of 1975, and a past parent from the class of 2013. He also sits on the school’s Board of Trustees.

The class of 2016 commencement also marked an important milestone for the Reading school – five members from the first graduating class of 1966 were on hand to celebrate their 50-year reunion – the school’s first.

Salutatorian Victoria McDermott of Wilmington recalled many of the things the class accomplished that seemed impossible only a short time ago. New adventures lay ahead.

“After all the lessons we have learned at Austin Prep, I am certain we will all become very successful at our new schools and in our new lives,” Victoria said. “I can’t wait to hear about all the amazing things you all do in college and beyond.”

The class of 2016 includes these students from Tewksbury:

  • Meghan Braciska of Tewksbury received the William J. Hickey Jr. Memorial Award for Good Sportsmanship. She will attend Northeastern University in the fall.
  • Matthew Brems of Tewksbury will attend Becker College in the fall.
  • Andrew Carman of Tewksbury will attend Quinnipiac University in the fall.
  • Americo DiFronzo of Tewksbury will attend Quinnipiac University in the fall.
  • Anne Mawn of Tewksbury will attend Suffolk University in the fall. 
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