As my mind and body now are starting to bound back to the point of being able to think again after experiencing some crazy last week adventures, before I proceed with that blog series, some unfinished topics have been bugging me, itching me, to cover and get across.
Every year for the last six years I had experienced at the end of the ASF school year, four specific events that reached out to me and never ceased to amaze me, sometimes even more in the afterthought. Many can relate to this as educators, BUT, I thin very few can on the level I had experienced these events at ASF in Mexico City.
Club Leadership Awards and Senior Awards. For 2017, I am still speechless to see how much time, effort, and commitment is evident when you take the time to just stop, and watch the goings-on around you of what our students AND advisors are doing. Of course Repentino. was shocked and honored to receive a Club of Clubs awards, but the reality sets in – we are NOTHING without the willingness to participate, support, and be involved, intertwined, and interconnected with other clubs, (Tech Club, Gamma, Math Club to name a few of MANY!) to do so allows us to be so much more and that is a recognition no award can be given for how lucky we are to be surrounded by so many amazing activity-based clubs. I love this evening, and always seems to be the first event that reminds us the years is winding down. Seeing the amazing seniors that follow recognized my community leaders – priceless. These two events that occur in one night not only show you the miles students have come, but the miles teachers have come outside the classroom as well as the Activities Director. Huge Kudos to what kicks off a alarm clock reminder, “these amazing students are entering the real world!”
Capping. Whether a spectator or a participant – this was my first time seeing this ceremony, and my all time favorite ceremony, by far. I love the fact this ceremony also includes parents as faculty, parents in general, and overall this is heartwarming, bitter sweet, and I want to hold onto the students from beginning to end. I loved there was a photo booth at capping this year. I liked when we sat outside together though (though the weather never cooperates). But most of all, there has never been a capping where tears have not welled up in my eyes, and this has nothing to do with me participating, but it has everything with me seeing the students come full circle since the first time I met them.
The ASF Athletic Gala this year was, I felt, off the hook amazing. What always ceases to amaze is seeing the sheer number of students, coaches, and parents involved in this process. The lobby is busting at the seams. However this year, the tables were loaded like an open market, and when you went to the tables to get what you wanted to snack on, you almost did NOT want to interrupt anything, break anything, or disrupt how amazing everything looked – classy to the “T.” The ceremony itself is a worshiping service of the commitment that coaches, teachers, students, alumni, and family put forward to help many be successful on and off the field. It is a humbling ceremony, and one I feel every educator needs to attend to truly participate the wide spectrum of what ASF brings to so many people simply in one season, let alone many’s lives.
This leaves while not all the end of year activities, the biggie. graduation. Despite the internal argument of field or not field, the fact remains. You have one chance to look at what you have done all year long, as a teacher, mentor, advisor, and more, and see what it has gone. It is a tear jerker for me inside because the speeches, in varying degrees and usually one or more will resound with you, combined with the memories you contain of seeing individuals that have been a part of your educator’s life for a VERY long part of a journey, all culminating into one event that built on the previous three mentioned above? Yes, I am sure this is a different experience for educators than students. the heat, the length, the Saturday that id a gatekeeper before end of the year grade calculations, and such, but, the fact remains, take the above three activities, roll them into one event, you have graduation, and an event that brings your involvement front and center. I found myself at the time wishing we could find a way to speed up the length of time students walked across the stage – because it is ONE LONG PROCESS, however, looking back now? I relish every single moment I have been lucky enough to play a part in the ASF Final procession
of graduation. Inspiring would be the understatement of the year when you have a chance to see what the word international means up front and center.
It is so easy to take for granted the process that let us all be here, but from the Activities Director, to the students, parents, educators, administrators, maintenance, and MORE – this is a crowning event that takes the above three and again, presents itself in a whisper that says, “Job Well Done”, something not likely to be forgotten any time soon.