OLD BRIDGE -Old Bridge High School held two, in-person graduation ceremonies on June 17 at Lombardi Field. The two commencement ceremonies, filled with all the pomp and circumstance of previous graduations, were held at 8 a.m. followed by another at 11 a.m.
Although recent changes to guidelines allowed the district to modify some aspects of graduation, the venue did not permit Old Bridge High School to have one ceremony with 683 graduates. A commitment to Lombardi Field and planning two ceremonies was made months ago, under the state-mandated guidelines at the time.
At the event, the school announced the names of the Class of 2021 valedictorian and salutatorian. Maxwell Goldberg, who finished in the top spot with a 5.718 grade point average, is headed to Rutgers in the fall, where he plans to pursue a double major in physics and either mathematics or computer science.
Salutatorian Samica Goel will attend the Wharton School of The University of Pennsylvania in the fall, where she plans to study business economics with a dual concentration in finance and legal studies.
While this year’s commencement allowed each graduate to bring four guests, the district livestreamed and taped the ceremonies so that siblings, extended family members and friends were able to view from their homes.
The ceremonies, which were shorter than the usual two hours, included many of the traditional components, and all students were recognized.
Graduates were seated in the home bleachers and families sat socially distanced on the field. Guests were encouraged to bring beach chairs and/or blankets since no guest seating was provided. Spectators did not need to wear masks while attending the outdoor event.
During the program, Cameryn Gray sang the national anthem at the first ceremony while Julia Strom sang it at the second.
Principal Vincent Sasso offered the welcome address while Superintendent of Schools David Cittadino presented the Class of 2021 at both graduations.
Vice Principal James Oliveri gave the farewell address to the senior class. The Class of 2021 celebration song was sung by Bashler Luxeus at the first ceremony and Julia Najarian at the second.
The OBHS Band, under the direction of Melissa Thatcher, and the OBHS Chorus, under the direction of Steven Updegraff, performed at each of the ceremonies.
- This article was provided by the Old Bridge Township Public School District.