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Endless Opportunities for Wantagh High School’s Class of 2024

Posted Date: 04/26/2024

Endless Opportunities for Wantagh High School’s Class of 2024

Under the golden sun on the Wantagh High School turf field, seniors marked a milestone as they turned their tassels and officially became graduates during the 69th annual commencement ceremony on June 21. 


The Class of 2024 processed onto the field to the tune of “Pomp and Circumstance” while Michael Avitabile, Morgan Masterson and Matthew Riley led the presentation of colors. Maylani Lee and Nyla Lester, co-presidents of the student government, led the flag salute. Jaiden Diaz, Melissa Lento and Ryan Horowitz conducted the band in playing the national anthem.  


Wantagh High School Principal Dr. Paul Guzzone, who took his first steps in the role as the Class of 2024 began their freshman year, commended graduates on their perseverance. “To say that we’ve been through a lot in our four years is an understatement,” he said, “and I could not ask for a better group of young men and women to be by my side. I will forever be grateful to be able to call myself your principal.”  


Superintendent John McNamara highlighted the joy emanating from the field. “There is a tremendous sense of pride here right now,” he said. “You can see it and feel it as you look around this evening – it’s palpable.”  


Board of Education President Adam Fisher reflected on the growth shown by graduates throughout the years. “Your myriad accolades and accomplishments over the past 13 years within our school district fill us with immense pride,” he said. “I’m confident that each of you will continue to soar to even greater heights as you embark on the next exciting chapter of your lives.”  


Senior class co-presidents Nyla Lester and Jaclyn Silverman addressed their peers and reflected on their journeys from first timid steps to confident graduates. “Reflecting on our last four years at the high school, I want to acknowledge the admirable development and growth of this class,” Nyla said. “No matter where life takes us, we will always have a piece of each other.” 


“It’s surreal to reach this exciting chapter in our lives,” Jaclyn added. “To many people here, our first day of kindergarten feels like just yesterday. I didn’t know it back then, but all I really needed to know I learned in kindergarten.” 


Wantagh Dollars for Scholars President Mr. Gerald McCrink, along with New York State Sen. Steven Rhoads, presented 17 scholarships to seniors.  


Salutatorian Catherine Ibrahim congratulated her peers and reflected on their many lessons. “Like it says in one of the walls of our beloved school: ‘Whatever you are, be a good one,’” she said. “I’m sure we’ve all felt the results of this one way or another… When we gave something our all is when it turned out for the best.”  


In her valedictory address, Maylani Lee reflected on the definition of “valedictorian.”  


“‘Valedictorian,’ as translated from Latin, means to bid farewell,” she said. “As such, I wish to close today’s events with a hopeful goodbye to my fellow graduates. Saying ‘Have a great summer,’ has turned into, ‘Have a great rest of your life.’ Looking out at all of you, I see people with endless opportunities.”  


Graduates proudly received medals and their diplomas as they shook hands with trustees. After turning their tassels, the Class of 2024 tossed their mortarboards in the air to celebrate the moment.


For more photos, click here: Graduation Photo Album


WHS Graduation