Twenty-one Byram Hills High School seniors were recently inducted into the Cum Laude Society at a ceremony held in the school’s cafeteria.
The inductees encompass 10 percent of Byram Hills’ senior class, which is anticipated to have 207 graduates.
“Our cum laude inductees exhibit what is known as academic grit,” Principal Christopher Walsh told the students’ families and friends at the event. “No doubt they have encountered setbacks at some point during their academic careers. However, our inductees don’t view those obstacles as permanent roadblocks, but rather as opportunities.”
Walsh was also inducted as a faculty member of the society.
David Hubbs, an English teacher who was inducted into the organization last year, encouraged the students to look for role models who “set the moral bar a little higher than you think you might be able to reach yourselves.”
Telling them of his early love of superheroes and his admiration of Atticus Finch from “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Hubbs said he hoped the seniors would find “someone who reminds you to put the simple message of kindness, compassion and integrity at the center of your universe. If you can do that, then with everything else you’ve got going for you, I have no doubt that you will be the heroes of the 21st century, and maybe even the superheroes.”
Founded in 1906, the Cum Laude Society honors academic achievement in secondary schools.
Byram Hills is one of only about two dozen public high schools with a chapter, according to the organization.
The vast majority of the 382 chapters are in private schools across the United States and in other countries.
The Byram Hills inductees include: Zachary Berkman; Lauren Berman; Sylvie Binder; Jack Briody; Isabelle Chong; Jonathan Conte; Thomas Daillak; Indra Dan; Timothy Eng; Anna Fratta; Michael Gelb; Elizabeth Jankovic; Jason Katz; Janine Liu; Samantha Mayers; Lauryn Power; Audrey Saltzman; Steven Sclau; Caroline Silpe; Elias Stefanopoulos; and Sabrina You.