New “Finale Rally” to Bookend School Year

New+%22Finale+Rally%22+to+Bookend+School+Year

Unlike the past two Closing Convocations, where all students, faculty and staff sat in the Lacerete Family Gymnasium, Interim Eugene McDermott Headmistress Liza Lee had a different idea in mind: a new and exciting “Finale Rally.”

This last one Hockaday event of the year will include this year’s Cornerstones’ release, sweet treats and a memorable send-off to the Class of 2016.

The purpose of having a closing convocation is to officially mark the end of a school year, but Lee wanted to have a more relaxed and festive celebration.

“The Lower School will have had its closing exercises, the Middle School will be about to have theirs, we have all sorts of mandated ceremonies and we didn’t need another [formal] one,” Lee said.

She discussed ideas with the student body and ultimately drew inspiration from the 1999 engagement party the entire school held for Head of Middle School Linda Kramer and Upper School History Department Chair Steve Kramer.

“I remember when Mr. and Mrs. Kramer got married, we held an all school party for them with ice cream sandwiches. I thought we could do the same thing and have a party,” Lee said.

Lee worked closely with Stephanie Rhodus, Director of Community Relations, to help plan the details for this ceremony.

“Lee thought we could add more pep to the ceremony as it is after all the very last day of school and the beginning of summer vacation,” Rhodus said, “we decided to make it more festive and party like.”

Students will enjoy frozen treats while mingling with other grades and listening to music on Metzger Plaza.

And the Cornerstones’ staff will be a part of the celebration as well. They will have a chance to share the theme and dedication of this year’s yearbook.

“I know [Mass Communications Department Chair] Ana Rosenthal and the entire staff are excited to be given this opportunity. They have worked so hard on the yearbook and deserve this recognition,” Rhodus said.

Co-editor-in-chief of Cornerstones Ilana Perkins hopes that the Hockaday community will acknowledge the amount of effort and work put into creating something so integral to Hockaday. Perkins said that students usually only leaf through the yearbook before casting it aside.

“I hope the celebration will make people look at the small details that went into the book from the colors to the fonts to the design, and see it more as a collaborative work of art that represents the whole school rather than solely a book to recap the year,” she said.

Talia Meidan, co-editor-in-chief of Cornerstones, feels that the celebration will not only honor the Cornerstones’ staff and their hard work, but also will be a great way to commemorate the dedication receiver.

“I am really excited to be able to celebrate all the work we did as a staff in front of the whole school,” Meidan said. “It will also be really special to be able to dedicate the book to its recipient in front of everyone [and] honor why we chose that person.”

Instead of releasing balloons, the ceremony will close with a special senior farewell in a symbolic fashion. While this send-off is kept a secret, Lee and Rhodus both agree that it will be a bittersweet end to their time at Hockaday.

“I think this Finale Rally will be a great way to get the entire community together for one last time and celebrate a great year,” Rhodus said.


Aurelia Han – Staff Writer

Cheryl Hao – Asst. Castoff Editor