Milton Hershey School Class of 2023 Honored at Senior Chapel and Awards Ceremony
On Sunday, June 4, Milton Hershey School’s Class of 2023 gathered with their Middle and Senior Division peers in Founders Hall for a special Senior Chapel Service and Awards Ceremony. The event served as the seniors’ final MHS chapel service prior to their graduation at Giant Center on Sunday, June 11.
The event was packed with inspirational messages, readings, and musical performances. Seniors who are members of the New Horizons select choir sang several numbers during the service, and a small group ensemble led by MHS senior TJ Kramer also shared a vocal number with the audience. Additionally, the Senior Division Wind Quartet, made up of members of current seniors, performed two numbers for the audience.
Senior Ediany Gonzalez welcomed guests to the event and shared the meaning behind the “Phoenix Class” and some of her favorite moments with the Class of 2023.
“I have a quick message to my class, make these next seven days memorable. Thank the Health Center dining staff, tell your teacher you appreciate [them], take your earbuds out at lunch and have a conversation, and tell your friends you are proud of them,” she said. “Please just take the time to practice gratitude because after these seven days, they will just be memories that we remember all too well.”
Gonzalez’s remarks transitioned to a special musical selection of “My Lighthouse,” one of several musical selections led by MHS Director of Religious Programs Will Ogle.
Ogle shared an inspirational message with the Class of 2023, reminding them of the importance of seeking out and holding on to what truly matters, while choosing your words carefully.
“No matter what season we are in, we can still be good and do good, while bringing good out of the circumstance that might not be so good on the surface” he shared. “The seasons will come and go, but we cannot hold on to them. The best we can do is to make the most of them while we are in them.”
To help seniors begin to reflect on their time at MHS, senior Jediah Pritz created a special video that played at the event, which included memories of the time the Class of 2023 has spent together. The service concluded with a special message from MHS senior Sharon Kossiakoff. Her message touched on the importance of family and the unique definition of the word for MHS students and staff.
“As Mr. Hershey once said, ‘Caramels are only a fad. Chocolates are a permanent thing.’ The same idea applies here. The IDs and tucked in shirts will end. The levels and restrictions will go away. The memories of the Health Center meals will soon sadly be forgotten. Though our ties here, our family, and our MHS roots—those are permanent things.”
Following the Chapel Service, the many seniors were honored with awards to recognize their accomplishments since enrolling at MHS.