Goodbyes are an unfortunate fact of life at international schools. Unlike other schools, which typically cater to a semi-ﬁxed community of families, international schools bring seemingly opposite worlds together – but often only brieﬂy. As we have drawn to the end of this academic year, many of us at EF Academy New York have prepared ourselves for these imminent goodbyes, many of which were said at this weekend’s graduation.
This past Saturday, May 20th, 2017, our senior class, which consisted of around 200 students, held their graduation ceremony at the EF Language School campus in Tarrytown. Parallel worlds seemed to collide as the families of the graduates came together to support their children, grandchildren and siblings. They claimed residencies in countries ranging from Algeria to Ukraine, and the swell of unfamiliar languages ﬁlled the auditorium as we waited for the ceremony to begin.
As it did, the EF Academy students in the audience began to bid farewell to both friends and mentors and relative strangers, people we did not know personally but whose presence still contributed to our EF Academy experience. Our senior class is an incredibly diverse one, through to nationality, number of years spent at EF Academy, interests and future plans. These students will move on to gap years, internships and universities such as New York University and Parsons School of Design.
I, alongside the rest of the EF Academy community which has watched them go, wish them all the best and more. I know they will do great things not limited by language or hemisphere or the country on their passport; they know these things matter very little when it comes to where, what and who they can impact. We will be able to watch them from afar as they continue their journeys, and perhaps we will have the pleasure of witnessing their transformations from a closer proximity at one point or another. At the end of the day, it truly is an incredibly small world – one which I feel conﬁdent will bring many of our alumni paths together someday soon.
Written by Maya Nylund, former student at EF Academy New York