A Parting Gift

Emery Lindy ’23

Every year, Senior students are tasked with delivering one of the most introspective assignments of their St. Mary’s career, the Senior Speech. Each twelfth-grade student must speak to her peers in Chapel, reflecting on her St. Mary's experience. The tradition was introduced in 2005 by English Department Chair Shari Ray. The speeches aim to help the girls improve their public speaking and communication skills.

More importantly, the students are empowered and encouraged to share their unique voices. The speeches are as intelligent, funny, thoughtful, and inspiring as the girls who deliver them. Through their remarks, the seniors provide thoughtful insights into the lessons St. Mary's has taught them and their hopes for the future. 

The speeches from the Class of 2023 are particularly inspiring. For example, reflecting on their remaining days together as a senior class, Emery Lindy said, "Every song has an end, but that's not a reason not to enjoy the music. This year will end, whether we count down or not. I don't know about you, but I am going to try to capture as many moments of pure bliss before I miss them." 

Mela Ford shared the importance of keeping a positive outlook, declaring, "Living optimistically to me means seeing the good in people, finding the positive in negative situations, and believing we can do whatever we put our minds to. I've never regretted looking on the bright side, even when life hasn't gone my way."

Grayson Finks extended a heartfelt tribute to her friends in the Class of 2023, many of whom have been her St. Mary's schoolmates since Pre-K. She said, "If any of you feel the need to be the best at something, know that you already are—you are my best friends. You were the best group of girls to grow up beside and are the best 62 women to walk through life with."

Hearing each student’s parting words to the fellow seniors, Upper and Middle School students, and faculty who have been a part of their St. Mary’s journey is incredibly touching.

Click the button below to view the Senior Speeches from the Class of 2023.

Senior Speeches

  • Upper School

Additional Images