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Mascoma’s New Beginnings

  • Mascoma Class President Emily Tevere talks about the senior class's accomplishments while giving the welcoming address at the school's graduation ceremony in West Canaan, N.H., on June 16, 2017. Commencement was held in the school's new auditorium due to rainy weather. (Valley News - Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to Valley News — Geoff Hansen

  • Mascoma senior Kamrin Reed smells a rose handed out to all of the graduates to wear at their commencement in West Canaan, N.H., on June 16, 2017. Seventy-nine Mascoma Valley Regional High School graduates received their diplomas. (Valley News - Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to Valley News — Geoff Hansen

  • Mascoma senior Cameron Holmes shows classmate Olivia Guziewicz the handshake he was planning to do with Principal James Collins after receiving his diploma at their commencement in West Canaan, N.H., on June 16, 2017. Due to inclement weather, the graduates snaked their way through the school's hallways to process into their new auditorium. (Valley News - Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 6/17/2017 12:16:08 AM
Modified: 6/17/2017 3:16:10 PM

West Canaan — Kaitlyn Seamans remembers feeling a rush of emotion as she walked through the doors of Mascoma Valley Regional High School in September.

She was excited to be starting her final year of school, but she also felt a sense of pride: both in the newly remodeled building and in all her class had endured during the 18 months of construction needed to modernize the facility.

“Positively the sense of pride I felt walking the hallway was revitalizing, like it was an entirely different building,” the class valedictorian said before an auditorium of roughly 500 people that spilled out into the hallway and cafeteria during Friday’s graduation ceremony.

“Mascoma Valley Regional High School is now a facility that we can be as proud of as we are the dedicated teachers that have shaped us into young adults and encouraged us to fulfill our full potential,” Seamans said.

As the 79 members of the Class of 2017 took their diplomas in the school’s new auditorium, many said the renovation project that added 35,000 square feet to the school didn’t just amount to a physical transformation. It also changed school traditions and norms, and this year’s seniors were on the forefront of those changes.

Class President Emily Tevere said Mascoma’s homecoming bonfires and pregame rituals continue as they once did, but her class ushered in a new fireworks celebration, community movie nights and art shows that will live on with future students.

“I believe that we are the luckiest class ever to graduate from Mascoma,” she said. “We have been a part of the complete renovation from untouched to finished, which was an amazing experience.

“Without the community supporting us students and this renovation, none of these events would have been possible.”

The class itself — comprising students from Enfield, Canaan, Orange, Dorchester and Grafton — also contributed to school culture, said April Guinness, a math teacher and this year’s keynote speaker.

Together, they won winter carnivals, drama, art and athletic victories, she said. They also sent Destination Imagination and robotics teams to compete on a national level.

“I cannot think of another class that can even come as close to you guys,” Guinness said, adding that the students also taught her lessons.

“It is possible to balance academics, community service, work, a social life and sleep,” she said while commending the class.

Maia Zawilinski, the class salutatorian, urged her fellow graduates to use the traits that make them so special to give back to the community.

Now that they’ve graduated, the Class of 2017 are full members of the greater Mascoma community, she said, and that means contributing as a member of the community.

“Whether you want to change a policy on the school board or the policy of our country, I encourage you to use your voice and your vote to build the ideal world you would have waned to grow up in,” Zawilinski said. “Give back to the community that has so generously given us this facility to use for the last years of high school.”

Tim Camerato can be reached at or 603-727-3223.

Mascoma Class of 2017

Bryar Daniel Allen, Army National Guard; Sasha Marie Bakker, University of Massachusetts Amherst; Crystal Rose Barratt, work; Emily Kendall Batten, work; Stephen Nicholas Bisbee, work; Haley Lisa Kenyon Bissonnette, University of Maine; Nicholas Allen Brown, work; Shania Marie Butman, New England School of Hair Design; Bryce Jacob Cadreact, Manchester Community College; William Augustus Chapman; Paul Smith’s College; Kyell Robert Crary, work; Bridget Erin Darling, West Virginia University; Rebekah Lynn Dimond, Paul Smith’s College; Jacob Ryan Dow, University of New Hampshire; Devin Scott Duhaime, Southern New Hampshire University; Kiahna Danielle Estes, River Valley Community College; Garrett Charles Evans, work; Sheldon John Farnsworth, University of Montana; Samantha Jo Farrell, United States Marine Corps; Catherine Rachael Ferland, Southern New Hampshire University; Tyler Allen Findley, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Derek Dean French, United States Army; Brandon Carl Gardner, Plymouth State University; Alicia Christine Gonzalez, Mount Holyoke College; Benjamin Allan Gravel, work; Emma Rose Grodan, Husson University; Courtney Marie Grover, University of Massachusetts Amherst; Olivia Elizabeth Guziewicz, Global Campus; Cameron James Holmes, Massachusetts Maritime Academy; Robert Francis Ibey, Keene State College; Bethany Ann Jacobs, work; August Robert Kuhn, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Amy Mary Luvia Labrecque, University of New Hampshire; Daniel John Ladue, New Hampshire Technical Institute; David Edwin Lahaye, Maine Maritime Academy; Kyle Andrew Langlais, Southern New Hampshire University; Justine Elizabeth Martin, Plymouth State University; Aidan Quinn McKinstry, work; Alexandra Rose Mekus, Radford University; Andrew Jason Melkonian, Army National Guard; Layla Guryel Meyveagaci, University of New Hampshire; Brianna Marie Monmaney, New England College; Jennifer Nicole Monmaney, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Matthew James Moore, Sierra Nevada College; Connor Chase Morley, University of New Hampshire; Ashlynn May Moses, work; Mark Tyler Olsen, work; Shannon Paiva, work; Evan Macaulay Peck, University of Vermont; Aidan William Poirier, Universal Technical Institute; Adam Matthew Purington, work; Aaron Christopher Quigley, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Jonathan Matthew Raymond, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Kamrin John Reed, work; Alexander James Schwarz, Plymouth State University; Kaitlyn Alexandra Seamans, University of New Hampshire; Simarya Marie Severance-Camp, Colby Sawyer College; Taylor Neil Shepard, work; Joshua Andrew Simoneau, United States Marine Corps; Conner Owen Smith, work; Ethan Richard Smith, Lyndon State College; Hunter James Stebbins, work; Robert Tucker Stenger, New England College; Gaige Delphia Streeter, work; Kylie Paige Sumner, Worcester Polytechnic Institute; Rosemary Louise Tetreault, University of Arizona; Emily Elizabeth Tevere, University of New England; Brandy Lynne Torrey, work; Katie Noel Torrey, United States Air Force; Ryan Scott Tucker, Plymouth State University; Evan David Tupper, Norwich University-United States Navy; Jacob David Washer, New Hampshire Technical Institute; Wyatt John Wheeler, Southern New Hampshire University; Pashents Elizabeth White, Plymouth State University; Garrett Samuel Williams, Maine Maritime Academy; Jordan Ray Wong, work; Jorden Lynn Wyman, work; Jillian Erin Young, New England College; Maia Eva Zawilinski, Wentworth Institute of Technology.

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