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New & Noteworthy
The 13th Graduation Ceremony -on April 8th, 2017-of Pathways World School Aravali, set off with sight and spectacle. Everyone rose to the ceremonial occasion with much gusto, as the chief guests were whole heartedly received by genial ushers and parents alike. The evening was graced by the presence of the Guest of Honour, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Punjab National Bank, Mrs. Usha Ananthasubramanian, Mr. Prabhat Jain (Founder Director), Mr. Pranay Jain (Director and Alumnus), and Dr. Kiran Datar (a Founding member of the Board of Governors).
Purple is a colour often associated with ambition and wisdom; The graduation ceremony of 2017 certainly projected that, with the graduates bedecked in their plum gowns. Dressed to the nines, the graduating batch congregated outside the admin. building, cutting a pretty picture against the radiating orange hue of the setting sun. With a warm glow on their faces, the graduates set foot upon one last journey they would take as high school students
The ceremonial lighting of the lamp brought out the solemn undertones of the event, and was an indicator to the seated audience to ready themselves for the nostalgic trip down the memory lane, which the event would soon prove to be. Accompanied by Indian classical tunes, Ada and Amogh sang the Sarasvati Vandana Mantra, to bring blessings of guidance and knowledge forth. The invocation song helped settle a serene aura all around.
Continuing down the path of music, the School Orchestra played ‘In the Hall of the Mountain King’ composed by Edward Greig. And with the swoosh of the cymbals, and the croon of the trombone, the evening turned mellifluously pleasant for one and all. As the soon to be graduates proceeded down the steps, the hearts of all watching parents and grandparents swelled with love and care for their children to purposefully cross the threshold of one phase in their life to another.
The prestigious Chairman’s Award is awarded to those who exemplify the ‘IB Learner Profile’, and project ideal learner attributes. This year, Riya Raj Gogoi, an aspiring gymnast and dancer, and Kormiyaki Lamarr, a photographer par excellence, were the recipients of this prestigious award. Another notable accolade, the Pushpa Jain Memorial, was awarded to Pranav Jindal, the President of the Interact Club. One more distinct set of award- for the ‘Complete Journey in Pathways’ was presented to -Anubhav Wadhwa, Mehul Chadda, Aryaman sheodaan,and Karan Chaudhary- who had come into Pathways Aravali as curious, flailing toddlers, and were now stepping out as still curious, poised young adults.
With her speech, Ms. Usha Ananthasubramanian reiterated the importance of self-esteem in one’s journey to self-actualisation. She also emphasized upon the need to be continuously inspired. Sound words indeed, coming from one of the ‘Most Powerful Businesswomen of India’. She has also been conferred with “Stree Ratna Award” and “Poorva Vidyarthini Ratna Award” and is a member on several Committees related to banking and finance.
Following the speech, was the announcement of the prestigious ‘Valedictorian Award’, which is conferred upon the outstanding academic achiever. The Valedictorian of the Batch of 2017, Malavika Giridhar Mandapatti, shared her journey through the years with a wistful peer into her burdened past of submissions and deadlines. As she personally reached out to those special few who contributed magnanimously to her successes, the graduates did likewise and counted their blessings.
Two special category of awards – ‘The Director’s Award and Special Recognition Award’ is given to those students who have shown commitment towards making a difference to the community, and this award was conferred upon Yash Agarwal and Naman Bhatnagar. The ‘Special Recognition Awards’- celebrating leadership skills, true Pathwaysian spirit and initiative and conviction- were given under the following categories : ‘Consistent Academic Performance’ was awarded to - to Ryna Puri, and Anvita Patwari; ‘Holistic Pathwaysian’ was conferred upon Ishaan Kapoor, Karan Chaudhary , Aanchal Aggarwal and Aishna Kumar; the award for exhibiting ‘True Pathwaysian Spirit’ was given to – Ravinan Kumar and Uddhav Gupta; the award for displaying ‘Initiative and Conviction’ was given to – Venkata Uthej Tadisetty and Mehul Chadda ; the award for ‘Exhibiting True Spirit’ in all areas of school life went to Swaraj Agarwal and Aakanksha Singh; the recipients of ‘Contribution to School Life’ award were -Aseem Ashish Jain and Rishni Bhandari and finally, the recipient of ‘Contribution to Diverse Community Service Initiative’ award went to the Angad Pal Shahi – President of the Interact Club.
The School Executive Director, Dr. Sarvesh Naidu’s hugely inspirational speech and anecdotal story about the shooting champion- Károly Takács - was a message to the graduates to consistently give their best, and not to be deterred by any setbacks in life.
Jolted from their reflective reverie with the announcement of the final series of awards- the IB diplomas and certificates, the IAYP, IGC Awards and a golden plaque for ‘ Academic Excellence’ in individual subjects- the graduates sat upright. The watching parents and grandparents captured each moment in a bid to cherish these bittersweet memories forever.
The evening went off without a hitch, with plentiful performances to display the ready talent of each individual here at Pathways Aravali. With Kashvi’s soulful rendition of Nancy Sinatra’s ‘Bang Bang’ and Rhea’s airborne dance, to the rock and roll of the school band, to Anubhav ‘tyreless’ in expressing his gratitude to his alma mater; we truly were reminded of the sparking distinctiveness that each Pathwaysian so expressively exudes.
The mantra of ‘We Are All In This Together’ rightfully made it centre stage; It was much highlighted by Karan Chaudhary, the Senior School President, in his humorous take on the quintessential attributes of high school life. Manav’s poignant choice of songs, set to the light strumming of his guitar brought forth the spirit of kinship.
As it was announced that Mr Arvind Chalasani’s (the Senior School Principal) 5-year stint would come to an end in the school, a few representatives of the batch of 2017 presented him with a memento to remember them by: A framed photograph of their entire grade. His advice to “let your imagination take giant leaps; else you will lose out on possibilities” will remain etched in the memory of each Pathwaysian, motivating them to search new opportunities and not to limit their challenges.
The customary sacrament of the flipping of the tassels was a symbol of the paradoxical baby steps of these fine young men and women into the real world. And as it is, the highest honour was bestowed upon the educators of these graduates as the light of wisdom was passed down, from educator to learner, embodying the true value of the rite and epitomising the perpetual cycle of time. Faces shining with both pride, and the radiance from the candles, the graduates expanded their states of bliss to envelope their loved ones too. With mixed feelings of solemnity and joy, the graduates added this moment to their trove of treasures they accumulated from their time spent with this school.
Text: Saarah Khan; Photographs : The Clicking Club; Editing ; Jaya Sharma; Graphic Design : .
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