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Countdown to Commencement 2021

May 10, 2021 — In less than a week, the Class of 2021 will officially be alumni of Northfield Mount Hermon. A whirlwind of activity leads up to Commencement day, with final exams interspersed with a variety of awards ceremonies, class activities, and other celebrations.

The main event — NMH’s 138th Commencement exercises — will take place at 11 am on Sunday, May 16. The outdoor ceremony will be held on campus for a limited number of pre-registered guests of the Class of 2021. The event will not be open to the public, but it will be livestreamed for those who cannot attend in person.

Rower, youth advocate, and author Arshay Cooper will give the Commencement address. Cooper grew up on the West Side of Chicago, where he joined, and later captained, the nation’s first all-Black high school rowing team. Cooper’s memoir, A Most Beautiful Thing (originally titled Suga Water), inspired the 2020 documentary film of the same title, which has been called “the perfect sports movie” by Sports Illustrated. The film tells the story of Cooper’s high school team reuniting after 20 years to train for the Chicago Sprints, one of the largest regattas in the Midwest.

Joining Cooper at the podium will be Zari Newman ’21, who was chosen by her classmates as the Class of 2021 orator. Class valedictorian Chun-Wen Ko and co-salutatorians Emaline Relyea-Strawn and Binhao “Bill” Wu will deliver remarks at other events this week.

Some end-of-year activities for the Class of 2021 are being livestreamed, including Commencement. The following events can be viewed here

  • May 10 at 6:45 pm: Farewell Concert 
  • May 13 at 6:30 pm: Class Day Exercises 
  • May 14 at 5 pm: The Chateau Dinner Dance photo reception on Memorial Chapel Hill 
  • May 15 at 6:30 pm: Baccalaureate Service 
  • May 16 at 11 am: Commencement