Landon's opening day Convocation ceremony featured a speech from Student Council President Art '23 that focused on the importance of community and change. Here is a lightly edited transcript of his remarks.
It is my honor to speak here in front of the entire Landon community. The first day of school is always nerve-racking simply because the year ahead is yet to be formed. We have no idea what sports games we will win, what grades we will get, how our performances will go, or what friendships we will make. In my experience, however, something that has reigned true each year is that we will change.
We will change as individuals, and as a community. The reason Landon is so special is because it is an optimal place to change. Here you will become part of a family. You and your family will experience highs and lows together. You will be amazed by the people you meet, and they you. You will create and use random words which will become commonplace on campus, and yet still have no cohesive meaning. That one, believe it or not, is a yearly tradition.
It is easy to think of one school year as being another 10 months of homework, assessments, early mornings, late evenings, and having a million things on your mind at once. It can be stressful, and the days can blend. It is easy to slip into a daily pattern where nothing is special to you anymore. You have due dates, meetings, assignments, practices, friendships. Balancing all of these can put us into a work mode where nothing else matters other than getting things done. I implore you, however, to slow down and appreciate where you are every once in a while. Appreciate the people around you. Appreciate your time here because it goes by a lot quicker than you may think.
Lower Schoolers, have as much fun as possible. Come in every day and try to learn as much as you can. Enjoy moments like the Shrimp Bowl and the Landon Cup. It may not seem like it now, but you will remember these next few years for a long time.
Middle Schoolers, try your best to build good habits. Practice being responsible and try to get your work done during the school day. Try out as many new things as possible. You will not regret it. Step out of your comfort zone. Make new friends. Enjoy form trips, dances, plays, and everything else you can do. It can get hectic sometimes, but you will make it through; just try your best to enjoy every day.
Upper Schoolers, be sure to enjoy your last few years here. Enjoy the moments with your brothers, and embrace the tough times, because they will only make you stronger. Embrace the fun times because memories here are priceless. Be good role models for the younger Bears and be good to your community. Support your brothers whether it be going to games, plays, art exhibitions, anything. Make every moment count. The experience is worth it.
If you take away anything from this speech, let it be this: You are not in this alone. Embrace your community and it will embrace you. Be yourself, learn from mistakes, and buy into the process. Try your best to grow in positive ways. Accept the Honor and Civility Codes. Try to think about how to model our core values. I guarantee you, the result of the journey you are embarking on this year, whether it is your first, your last, or anywhere in between, will be one that gets you one step closer to becoming the best man you can be. Go Bears!