Thirty members of the Class of 2018 were inducted into the MICDS Chapter of the Cum Laude Society on April 12. During the induction ceremony, Paul Zahller shared, “The candidates whom we will recognize this morning are here because they have believed in the quest for knowledge, and have pursued it with excellence.”
As mentioned in the 2017-2018 All-School Handbook, the MICDS Chapter of the Cum Laude Society “honors 12th grade students who have distinguished themselves academically during their 9th, 10th, 11th, and first trimester of 12th grade years. To be eligible for membership, students’ cumulative Grade Point Averages must be at least an A- (3.67) and place them in the top 20% of the class. In addition, they must demonstrate that they have pursued academic rigor by enrolling in at least three Advanced Placement® courses during their high school years, have no grade lower than a C and have never been on Disciplinary Warning, Disciplinary Probation or Honor Warning. Cum Laude membership is rescinded if these standards are not maintained through the end of the 12th grade year.”
The St. Louis Country Day School chapter of the Cum Laude Society was formed in 1926, and the Mary Institute chapter originated in 1941. The mission of the Cum Laude Society is to “recognize academic achievement in secondary schools for the purpose of promoting excellence (Areté), justice (Diké) and honor (Timé).”
This year’s student speakers, Cara Johnson ’18 and Campbell Schafer ’18, were selected by vote of their peers. As part of the induction process, all of the candidates are asked to write an essay, choosing from three topics. Both chose to write hers about what it means to lead a life of purpose and service.
“Purpose is about being affected, changed, altered, adapted in a way, as a result of someone’s life interacting with yours. Either this effect enhances your original path of purpose or solidifies it by proving you won’t let your moral value or service be manipulated. Purpose isn’t just some profound, elusive, intangible concept that we blindly navigate; it’s a reason, a sense of determination which guides our lives—lives which aren’t always easy,” said Cara.
Campbell stressed in her speech, “It takes gut to recognize the world for what it is. But it takes a lot more courage to recognize the world for what it could become.”
Class of 2018 Inductees