Casady's Cum Laude Society Welcomes New Members

Casady School has welcomed 15 new members to the Cum Laude Society. Traditionally, the induction ceremony is held during a special Chapel with a keynote speaker who addresses the Upper Division. Ms. Julieta Zesiger, Chair of the Science Department, is president of the Casady Cum Laude Chapter and, along with Mr. Sheldon, welcomes the new members.

Students inducted to the Cum Laude Society have demonstrated excellence in their academic work, good character, honor, and integrity in all aspects of their school life. Cum Laude recognizes scholarship and stresses excellence, justice, and honor.

"While we may not be able to celebrate the way we usually do, together in our Chapel, I couldn't be more proud of the hard work these 15 young people have shown and their willingness to share that knowledge with their peers," Mr. Sheldon said. "I know that each one of our honorees also wishes and looks forward to the time they can thank, in person, the many teachers who have helped to nourish their love for learning."

At Casady, the Upper Division faculty, administrators, and current student members of the Society nominate candidates for induction. Election to the Society is limited in a given academic year to no more than 10% of the junior class and no more than 20% of the senior class. The Casady Selection Committee meets and deliberates about the nominees to determine the final list of inductees. The prime criteria for selection into the Cum Laude Society includes: the number and enthusiasm of nominations; a demonstrated excellence in academic work; a willingness to take academic risks; a demonstrated sense of collegiality; a love of learning; and good character, honor, and integrity in all aspects of School life. This criteria supports the Society’s motto of excellence, justice, and honor. Students elected to the Cum Laude Society have distinguished themselves by the rigor of their curriculum and their enthusiasm for learning.

From the Senior Class
Laura Christine Alasad
Rumaish Niranjan Khastgir
Preston Clent Piercey
Malavika Venkat Rajaram
Lukas Kyle Schneider
Charles Heath Stanfield
Kendall Ann Terry
Celine Lan-Khanh Vuong
From the Junior Class
Sophia Quin Dykstra
Sara Ann Gibson
Carlos Paul Henry
James Bowman Lowe
Matthew Diego McQuistion
Cate Ellen Richardson
Spencer Victoria Steele
Seniors Inducted in 2019
Sara Kathryn Jarjoura
Joseph Kurian Manfredo
Saadia Afrah Nazir
Reese Olivia Rhodes
Dylan Nilesh Vasan
Nikki Takahashi Weitzenhoffer
Qin Ariel Xu

Excerpt from Ms. Zesiger's introduction:

"Those selected this year to join the Cum Laude Society are intellectually brilliant people; they love to learn and they are also courageous and not afraid of the challenges provided by rigorous courses like Advanced Placement or Honors classes. They have opted to take the difficult classes to learn more, even if these classes may lower their GPA. They keep up with the lessons and requirements of their classes and excel in them despite the challenges.

"They take the responsibility of their own education. They come in for extra help early in the morning and/or during their free periods. They go beyond what is expected of students in their classes by reading more, analyzing, and finding answers to challenging questions. They are not afraid to ask questions or to make mistakes because they know that these are part of the learning process.

"They respect their peers and their teachers. They help their classmates even when they are busy with their own assignments. They suggest and participate in interesting discussions with them. They do not only excel in their academics but they are also good athletes, stage performers, artists, musicians, debaters, and leaders. They go through their lives inside and outside of the Casady Campus with excellence, good character, honor, and integrity. We are, indeed, fortunate to have such fine students as members of the Casady community.

"To the inductees: The distinguished record you have made for yourselves at Casady School has won for you membership in the Cum Laude Society. This is a fellowship of scholars whose purpose is to recognize excellence in academic work. As you pursue your education and career in the future, it is our hope that you will accept the responsibility to make some contribution to the on-going search for greater understanding of humans and society."

Founded in Maryland in 1906 for the purpose of recognizing scholastic achievement in secondary schools, the Cum Laude Society has grown to become an international academic society with 382 chapters at a number of public and a larger number of private schools in the United States as well as in Canada, England, France, Philippines, Puerto Rico, and Spain. The founders of the society modeled Cum Laude after Phi Beta Kappa. The Latin term “Cum Laude” means “With Praise.” The Society’s motto is three Greek words:
  • Arete (Excellence): Arete includes the concept of excellence in the moral sense and is not limited to the ideal of superiority and scholarship, nor does it involve the endeavor of competing primarily for academic goals.
  • Dike (Justice): Dike includes the concept of what is suitable and appropriate, as well as just.
  • Timé (Honor): Timé includes the concept of dignity and truth, as well as honor.

The Casady School Chapter of the Cum Laude Society started in 1961 and is one of 19 ISAS Schools to host a chapter.
Casady School welcomes a student body that reflects the diversity of the world around us and therefore does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, nationality, or ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, athletics, and other school-administered programs generally accorded or made available to students at the School.
Casady School is an independent, co-educational, college preparatory, Episcopal day school serving students in pre-k-12. Educating Mind, Body, and Spirit.