On April 23rd, EF Academy Oxford celebrated the graduation for the Class of 2021!
Basked in the glorious Spring sunshine, the final day played out for our Year 2’s. Divided in two, the first half of the day was devoted to the ceremony, hosted online for all parents, students and their first year friends to enjoy with the second half being an outside garden party, socially distanced across Cotuit lawn.
The ceremony was introduced with a welcome from Head of School, Dr. Paul Ellis, encouraging students that they are now prepared for anything. The overarching theme was that of their resilience as a year group and studying throughout a global pandemic, as Dr. Ellis applauded their achievements and results.
This message was coupled by praise from staff and A-Level and IB Coordinators Kevin Cousineau and Dona Jones who delivered the numerous Academic Excellence and Endeavour awards. The audience was treated to performances from pianists Bernardo Pina and Jiaqian Ji Ye as well as scenes from the Autumn production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Valeria Molina Castillejos motivated her classmates and successive first years with a heartfelt valedictorian speech. All were met with riotous applause from the online audience, unmuted in time to create an energetic atmosphere.
We were joined by audience members from around the world, with parents tuning in from as far as Mexico, Russia, Nigeria and China. Our guest speakers were equally international, with SeonJoo Yoon, Vice President EF Academy, Asia, who spoke about her career journey, advising students to follow passions and do what they love.
Having formally congratulated the graduates and celebrated their accomplishments online with friends and family, our festivities spilled out onto the lawn for a final message from Dr. Ellis who instigated the traditional launching of the Mortarboards, otherwise known as the Oxford Cap.
This was followed by a pleasant afternoon on the lawn, dining on sandwiches and canapés, receiving awards, and sipping No-secco (non-alcoholic prosecco). Our students enjoyed their final day and spent the afternoon in conversation with classmates, teachers and school staff, lapping up the atmosphere of achievement and sighing deep breaths of contentment.
We were blessed with feedback from students and parents who had celebrated with us and celebrated in their own homes, from around the world, in true EF Academy international fashion.
We once again congratulate our Year 2’s on their monumental achievements!