Columbus Academy honored its 105th graduating class during a morning Commencement ceremony on June 7.

To the sound of bagpipes playing, the school’s faculty, staff and trustees entered the Senior Quad under a partly cloudy sky, followed by the seniors.

The ceremony began with a pair of welcomes from Head of School Melissa Soderberg and senior class president Georgia Tuckerman ’18.

After an interlude performance by the Viking Orchestra, Lexis Hughes ’18 gave the valedictory address as this year’s recipient of the Andrew William Cary Cup.

“Every day, we inspire each other to be the best we can be,” stated Hughes to her fellow graduates. “Sure, we will all make mistakes in the future; none of us will ever be perfect. But to be completely honest, perfection is boring. Our quirks and faults and differences are what makes us each unique, irreplaceable and perfectly imperfect in every way.”

In addition to being this year's recipient of the Cary Cup, Hughes was inducted into Academy's Cum Laude Society and was co-recipient of the Margaret Plessinger Cup. She has been accepted into the prestigious Morrill Scholars Program at The Ohio State University to study biomedical engineering.

From the “econ cheer” to his first visit to Notre Dame on a fateful day in November 1963 to his comparison of the Academy from 50 years ago to the school he sees now to his advice for the 95 graduates, the Commencement Address by revered teacher, coach and alumnus John Exline ’64 created quite a buzz. It was a speech much anticipated, and the longest-serving teacher and coach in CA history did not disappoint, as evidenced by standing ovations both before and after his time at the lectern.

Members of Academy’s Class of 2018 then crossed the stage to received their diplomas as names were read by Head of Upper School Cory Izokaitis.

Following performances of “Fare Thee Well” and the school’s Alma Mater by the Academy Chorale, the faculty, trustees and graduates departed the quad to loud applause.

Columbus Academy’s Class of 2018 (listed by hometown)

Bexley (10): Victoria Anne Abell, Sarah Hall Belford, Michael Peter Boeckman, Addis Whitner Todd Boyd, Muriel Joy Goldfarb, Margaret Nicole Kelemen, Xiaodong D. Qu, Benjamin Lurie Ross, Georgia Beth Tuckerman, Nicholas T. Watson

Blacklick (9): Kareena Arora, Isabelle M. Bettinger, Keith M. Condray-Raderstorf, Kathryn Marie Jacoby, Jade Summer Juniper, Chase Henry Kallmerten, Emily Ann Munster, Liana Emi Shiroma, Lucas Randolph Tiberi

Columbus (8): Connor James Brown, Briyana Jorde Ameerah Dragin, Khloe Elise Dubenion, Skyla Francine Johnson, Shenique Makella Lewis, Herman L. Moultrie III, Angus Brett Soderberg, Angel V. Watkins

Delaware (3): Anders P. Seline, Apsara Jasmine Som, Randy Yan

Dublin (5): Vincent Noah Allen, Lexis D. Hughes, Bilal S. Mohsin, Jonathan Arthur Ostrowski, Zachary Zeyang Zhou

Gahanna (8): Kelley Marie Antoine, Zachariah Pasco Beck, Max D. Dreisbach, Michalea Gawai Lai, Joshua Ryan Paul Pearson, Jack Chaney Reifeis, Olivia Taylor Ryan, Yujie V. Wang

Galena (3): Cameron Saeed Kharazi, Tessa Lopresti, Taylor Amico McGowan

German Village (1): Avery Leigh Oberfield

Grandview (1): Julia Christine Leet

Granville (2): Sarah Elizabeth Mulvey Morris

Heath (1): Matthew Dayton Saling

Lewis Center (1): Michael Thomas Reagan

New Albany (23): Neena Uma Baliga, Sebastian J. Bergman, Madelyn Rae DeAscentis, Madeline Kennedy Dunlap, Davis Alexander Friedman, David Karibi O. Hart, Abigail J. Jeffers, Justin Kahle, Serra Therese LaPerna, Jane Zhou Li, Ryan Andrew Mitchell, Shreyah Mohanselvan, Ruby McKayla Evelyn Moss, Alexandra Ruth Sabgir, Yasaman N. Salon, Johnathan Edward Schiano, Matthew Edward Schiano, Carly Danielle Shocket, Samuel Vogel, Nicholas S. Walter, Grace Elizabeth Yakam, Harrison Phan Hieu Zaye, Andy  Zhang

Newark (1): Kieran Davis Law

Pataskala (1): Max T. Chavarria

Pickerington (3): Clare Nicole Neltner, Tejas Sinha, Kyra Nicole Zoog

Powell (3): WonJae Lee, Abhinav C. Ramaswamy, Austin M. Zhang

Reynoldsburg (2): Alicia Denise Ann Harmon

Sunbury (1): Esther Elaine Lawrence

Upper Arlington (5): James Johnson Chester, Alexander Chapman Freytag, Lauren Vincenza Fumi, Eleni M. Grant, T.J. Whitman

Westerville (5): Austin David Abraham, Christopher J. Heermann, Alyssa J. Kim, Carson Elliott Nichols, Anna E. Shuff

Worthington (1): Nicholas David Robie