Sun, Smiles and Tears of Joy for Scholars' Celebration

We toasted our Scholars in May 2012 with our annual Spring Scholars' Celebration. The sun shone brilliantly for hors d’oeuvres on the patio outside the Phillips Academy log cabin, before scholars and guests gathered inside for dinner and special recognition.

Mary Pritchard began the evening with the President’s report reminding us all of the journey each scholar has taken as she has adjusted to life in Andover, high school and the ABC House, and how they have done so with “courage, determination, humor, some tears, but always with a sense of purpose.” She also shared that for a second year in a row, our students have distinguished themselves as a group by carrying a house academic average of a 3.93 GPA! All have earned house honors or high honors with 5 scholars having a GPA of 4.0 or higher. They are an extraordinary group.

Mary presented the President’s award to Lynn Eikenberry for her outstanding contributions to Andover ABC not only as a devoted board member, but continuing her involvement even after stepping off the board, by leading the ABC Communications team, writing much of our newsletter, managing our media releases, and keeping our website up to date.

Our graduating senior, Monique Espinoza, was recognized and feted by resident director Audra Reilly as well as her host parents, Patty and Jim Gillette. All of the scholars joined together to offer a thank you to all of the support the program receives and returned to the podium to create a special tribute to Audra as she nears the end of her stay as resident director. Each student selected a flower that she thought most appropriate to represent her thoughts on how Audra had been supportive from late night talks to being a positive role model to the overflowing love shared as a house. The tribute to Audra’s role as resident director continued with Lani Peterson sharing the many hats that Audra has had to wear in her role and balancing all of them with grace and good spirits.

Everyone departed knowing that the Andover A Better Chance program continues with strength as our scholars wind up their school years and new resident directors prepare for their arrival this summer.