Graduation of Cathedral High School Class of 2017

Cathedral High School’s 87th Commencement Exercises marked the fourteenth consecutive year that the South End school saw every single senior graduate and earn college admission. The 57 members of the Class of 2017 received their high school diplomas Saturday, May 20 at Saint James the Greater Church in Boston.

Head of School Dr. Oscar Santos spoke to the 87th graduating class and their families and friends about the importance of their strong Cathedral High community, not just in getting them to this point but in going forward in their lives. “Make sure you find your purpose and your passion. You have to have a job, pay bills; all those are important. But when you have purpose and a passion you have the energy to know you are making a difference,” encouraged Dr. Santos. “Don’t settle; make sure you find something that fulfills you and makes you a better person,” he added.

The Class of 2017

The 87th Commencement Exercises of Cathedral High School at Saint James the Greater Church

The 57 newest alumni earned 261 acceptances to 81 different college and universities. Among the schools students have matriculated at include impressive local institutions such as Boston College and Wellesley College as well as great schools farther afield including at University of Central Florida and Temple University.

Salutatorian Daniel Janowiec talked about his formative journey at Cathedral, comparing himself to a television show character evolving over several seasons — starting with anxiety and fear as a freshman and evolving into the best version of himself. Recalling seminal events and activities such as marching in Washington D.C. for the right to life and speaking at the Adopt-a-Student Foundation dinner to raise money for Cathedral scholars, he credited the entire Cathedral community with his path to success.

Valedictorian Amberose McDonald addresses her fellow graduates

Valedictorian Amberose McDonald addresses her fellow graduates

Amberose McDonald, named the 2017 valedictorian, invoked the well-known quote by writer Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”  She expanded on her advice to fellow graduates adding, “While life is tough, it is worth living; So live it.  Excellence is never an accident, it the result of hard work; so if you want something, work for it.”

The Vigor in Arduis award, named for the school’s (and school founder’s) Latin motto meaning strength in the face of adversity, is Cathedral High School’s highest honor to a senior.  Jonathan Torres was named as the 2017 recipient for distinguishing himself in all aspects of life and embodying gospel values.

Head of School Dr. Santos shakes hands with the Class of 2017 as they exit Saint James the Greater Church

Head of School Dr. Santos shakes hands with the Class of 2017 as they exit Saint James the Greater Church

Awards to other distinguished seniors included: the Spirit Award for enthusiasm and action to Roody Jean-Baptiste; the Covenant Award for valuing diversity and promoting harmony in the Cathedral community to Jenaysia Joseph; the Service Award for routinely volunteering time and talent to others to Rasheed Williams-Jackson.

During the commencement exercises, the school celebrated the milestone anniversaries of graduation for several past classes. Alumni from the classes of 1957 and 1967 received their Golden Diploma. In addition, Dr. Santos highlighted them in his address to the graduates saying, “Thank you for letting our students know that our relationship goes beyond graduation. Thank you for doing wonderful things with your lives.”

With a final bit of encouragement before they stepped out of Saint James the Greater Church and into their post-high school life, Dr. Santos added, “The great Martin Luther King was asked how to build courage and he said through community. So I ask you to be courageous when you have challenges; lean on each other and your Cathedral High School community.”

Mortarboard Toss

The newest alumni toss their mortarboards in celebration of their graduation

The 87th Graduating Class of Cathedral High School

  • Sheldon Xavier Adelson
  • Nathanael Amao-Hester
  • Medjine André
  • Nigel Austin
  • Manuel M. Barboza, Jr.
  • Jaylin Paige Bartholomew-Miller
  • Cheyenne Alexis Thérèse Blackwell
  • Jehan Isabella Bodden
  • Justin Silva Cardoso
  • Vany Barros Cardoso
  • Jefferson Samuel Casseus
  • Aldrin Samir Castillo Cruz
  • Calvin Chauncee Cheek
  • David Darren Cherestal
  • Jessica Jasmin Davis
  • Kelyan Semedo Debarros
  • Jason Denis
  • Rachel Danielle Dhoray
  • Andy Dinh
  • Naïka Etienne
  • Chastity T. Evans
  • Karissa Danielle Figueroa
  • Christopher Alexander Flores
  • Autumn M. Graham
  • Emanuel Green
  • Meghan Harrington
  • Imani Harris
  • Selina N. Hernandez
  • Tommy Hua
  • Daniel Janowiec
  • Roody Jean-Baptiste
  • Jenaysia K. Joseph
  • Masseny Lamine Kaba
  • Alexis Lee Livingston
  • Toni Alana Lyder
  • Trevor M. Lynch, Jr.
  • Xavian Eliseo Marrero
  • Byron Khari Martin
  • Lara Matos
  • Amberose Leigh McDonald
  • Korrie Jon-William McIntyre, Jr.
  • Valerie Monterrey
  • Victor R. Owens, Jr.
  • Jacob David Peréz
  • Wilbryna Pierre
  • Tikia T. Price
  • Daniel Purcell
  • Alyson Rakelle Reid
  • Meagan Nyree Seldon
  • Volinda Tellewoyan
  • Christopher James Tompkins
  • Jonathan Torres
  • Jasmin Veerapen
  • Amel Enaj Viaud
  • Daejah Symoné Weaver
  • Jasmine Jada White
  • Rasheed K. Williams-Jackson

Graduates are Congratulated by Family Seniors Celebrate after Graduation with their Diplomas