Let's join together and celebrate the Class of 2022. Like so many Merion graduates of decades past, these students stood in white graduation gowns, wearing white gloves, and carrying yellow roses, ready and uniquely able to enter the next chapters of their lives as women of tremendous knowledge and know-how, compassion and care, and grace and grit.
In many ways they represent alumnae who have gone before them, their parents and caregivers who nurtured and supported them, and the Mercy educators who have guided them and opened their minds and hearts to lifelong learning.
These 116 graduates earned 343 Merit scholarships and $24,253,840 in scholarship money along with 733 letters of acceptance to 172 colleges and universities. And, while we can measure their success in many tangible ways, true inspiration comes from knowing that these young women of passion and purpose will undoubtedly leave an indelible mark on the world.
As Olivia Tingley-Kelley so eloquently said in her Baccalaureate Mass remarks: "With passionately pained hearts and deep roots in compassionate, joyful, resilient, and ingenious Mercy, I have no doubt that this class will change the world."
Almira Tensuan-Eli, in her Graduation speech, spoke about the light that defines a Merion Mercy girl: "I see here and now, this light is in each of your eyes. Eager, nervous, maybe just a little tired, but in all ways ready to take the next step. In everything you do, you will carry this light with you."
It is with great pride and tremendous hope that we send forth these remarkable young women to, in the words of Catherine McAuley, "be as shining lamps, giving light to all."