Savannah Jelks, Kennedy Gayle and James Manship, Class of 2012, reflect on their experiences at Browne during their graduation speeches.
Hello, everyone, my name is Savannah Jelks and I have attended Browne for three years now, ever since sixth grade. I remember my first day at Browne as clearly as if it were yesterday. I remember how scared and excited I was to be starting middle school. My fears were soon put to rest when I saw how welcoming and amiable the teachers and students were. In seventh grade my classmates and I were challenged even more when we were taught history, English, and science by a new set of teachers. This proved to be both exciting and difficult. In eighth grade, the excitement and expectations reached a whole new level. My classmates and I maneuvered the difficulties of eighth grade and the stress of applying for high schools. As a grade, we bonded more than ever this year, especially during the eighth grade trip.
At Browne I have learned so much about myself, who I am, and who I want to be. I feel ready for high school because of the way Browne has helped me grow and develop over the years. I would like to thank my teachers who helped me navigate this important time in my life. Without your help and encouragement, I would not have made it this far. I would like to thank my friends who have been there for me since I first came to Browne. And last, but certainly not least, I would like to thank my parents who encouraged and supported me beyond belief. Thank you Mom and Dad for always believing in me and telling me to be the best I can be. We are entering a new time in our lives, high school, but the bonds I have made here at Browne will last a lifetime."
"Hello, everyone, and welcome. My name is Kennedy Gayle, and Browne Academy has been my home for eleven years. My mother always tells me that I spend too much time being social rather then being a student, which is apparently my ‘most important job.’ But I beg to differ. Berthold Auerbach once said that, “Years teach us more than books,” and with the help of my fellow graduates and members of the faculty, I have learned life lessons that you would not be able to find in any novel.
My first day at Browne Academy, to say the least, was rough. Not wanting to leave my mother’s side to play with all of the other kids, I threw a fit. Ms. Janet picked me up, gave me one of her famous kisses, and sent me off to play. After that, I barely would say goodbye to my mother on the way out of the car. Middle School has been a crazy ride. Making countless mistakes along the way, with the help of all of my teachers I have managed finally, after eleven years, to make it to my eighth grade graduation.
To my friends, thank you. Without you guys, I honestly do not know where I would be. Thank you for sticking by me. To my parents, I just want to say sorry. Sorry, I’m such a dramatic person. Sorry, I don’t get up on time. Sorry, I always volunteer you to drive my friends and me to various events and places. Thank you. Thank you for sending me to such a great school. I know I don’t say it enough, but know that I love you. And to my teachers, I also thank you for helping me along the journey. I know my classmates and I tend to complain often, but we wouldn’t be where we are without you. I would like to say a special thank you Mrs. Manning, Ms. Lea, Ms. Janet, and Mrs. Rosen for always being there when I need you. You are all the best.
I wish the class of 2012 the best. I know that all of you will surpass expectations in these years to come."
"My name is James Manship, and I have attended Browne Academy for three years. I am honored to be speaking today. I wish you to know that have enjoyed getting to know my teachers and fellow students as friends in the last few years. As a middle-school student, I have had to deal with the many problems of growing up. My teachers have helped me with this endeavor in the simple ways, such as just reading a poem or personally relating to my situation. I also have made many friends that have supported me over the years. I had the wonderful opportunity to perform with the guitar ensemble at Grandparents Day. We played “Dream On” by Aerosmith. Not only was the piece a challenge for me, but learning the piece with the ensemble helped me get to know the other students better. One of my favorite eighth grade memories is snorkeling on the eighth grade trip. It was a fun to be with everyone in a new place. I will always remember how it rained and how wet we were on boat ride back to land. We were all soaked!!
I have learned and have improved incredibly in my work habits during my time at Browne Academy. Thanks to all of my teachers and for helping me to understand the subjects and for being patient. At the start of seventh grade, I had difficulty with writing, but now, after my time at Browne, the writing process goes smoothly. I am truly prepared for my high school experience. Thank you to my teachers for helping me to succeed academically.
Most importantly, I want to thank my mom. Thank you for allowing me to be educated in a great school and for listening to me when I was upset, as well as when I was happy. Thank you for helping me to grow into the person I am today and for supporting my musical endeavors.
Today marks the end of my time at Browne. I know that Browne will continue to positively influence children and teenagers for years to come. I look forward to moving on to the next chapter of my life. I am excited to see what adventures it holds. Thank you for the last three years."