On Thursday, June 8, 326 La Salle Academy seniors processed onto the stage of the opulent Providence Performing Arts Center, over which hung a banner of founder Jean-Baptiste de la Salle, and stepped off as alumni rooted in the De La Salle Christian Brothers tradition.
With Auxiliary Bishop Robert C. Evans, La Salle Academy President Brother Thomas Gerrow, F.S.C., and Principal Donald J. Kavanagh looking on, 2017 graduates Abigail C. Almonte and Alexander P. Philips addressed the full house of peers, family and friends who filled the theater. Almonte said of the endless lessons she learned during her years at La Salle, the most powerful one comes from a quote she saw painted on the cafeteria wall and never forget from the day she shadowed there as a prospective student.
“It reads, ‘Enter to learn, leave to serve.’ I studied that wall and have referenced it daily, promising to be grateful for all that I was about to learn and apply when the time came,” she said. Philips implored his fellow graduates not to be complacent with their achievements, nor dwell on the hardships of the past.
“We look back, but we also look ahead to the sprawling landscape ahead of us, and marvel at all the other mountains in the distance yet to be explored and conquered,” he said. “But we won’t just stand here and take in the view. In the words of a beloved teacher at La Salle I’ve had, “Take pride in how far you have come, but likewise have faith in how far you can go.”