The Georgetown School of Arts and Sciences held its second commencement ceremony on the evening of Friday May 29, in the Es’Dorn Room of the historic Winyah Auditorium. Sarah Alexandra Exum, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joe Exum of Pawleys Island, graduated with academic honors She will attend Indiana University in the fall to study pre-med.
Father Pat Stenson of Precious Blood of Christ Catholic Church gave the invocation, then Dr. Gary Gates, Head of School, and Mrs. Joyce Gates, President of the Board of Directors, welcomed students, parents, faculty and guests to the joyous occasion.
Sarah Exum then addressed the crowd of sixty people, talking about her decision to take a chance in her junior year on a brand-new school. She thanked the faculty and expressed her love and appreciation for her fellow students. “I know it’s weird, but I actually liked coming to school,” she said, “I feel very well-prepared for my future at Indiana.”
Dr. Laura Gates then spoke about a painting by nationally-known artist Jonathan Green on display in the Es’Dorn Room. Green recently made this study of three floating balloons in a blue sky for The Georgetown School during the first annual Georgetown Gullah Festival. His gift was unveiled at the school’s Awards Ceremony earlier the same day. “This painting makes me think of our graduates,” Gates said, noting that students, like balloons, must eventually be released from safety and protection and allowed to fly free. She encouraged Sarah to follow Green’s practice of re-imagining reality to create a better world.
It was all smiles and tears as Sarah prepared to come forward to receive her diploma. Dr. Gary Gates praised her for her initiative and sense of responsibility over the years. “Besides her academic achievements, Sarah of her own volition organized our first volleyball team,” he noted, counseling Sarah to make time for herself at college, “When people find out how good you are at everything, they are going to want to put all the responsibility on you.”
After Sarah received her diploma with handshakes, hugs, and applause all around, everyone enjoyed a reception to celebrate her fine achievement. Thank you, Lisa Haas and the PTO for the delicious food–what a great finish to a fantastic year!