Haldane Class of 2016 Valedictorian: Wylie Thornquist

I moved to Haldane in my sophomore year, after having attended Walter Panas High School for one year. During my following three years attending Haldane, I have run multiple seasons of cross country and spring track. I have found my own style in art and creative writing for Haldane’s literary magazine while serving as the magazine’s editor. I have picked up Spanish as a second language, and am very excited to have reached a point where I am comfortable with conversations held entirely in Spanish.

This year, I founded Haldane’s Identity Interest Group, where students have a forum to discuss everything that affects how they see themselves, from gender and sexuality to race and religion, and served as co-president along with another student. I have participated in Haldane’s Women Empowered Club, and am a co-producer, model and designer for Haldane’s Fashion Show.

I have worked as a mentored artist for the Garrison Art Center’s Artist Mentor Program three years in a row, and have been a part of their Summer Arts Intensive during my freshman and sophomore years. I have submitted my art to the Putnam Arts Council’s student show for the past two years, and won best in show during my junior year. I worked alongside two other Haldane students in planning and creating a mural. As a student I have supported my friends involved with Haldane’s theater productions in the best way I know how: by painting sets and working on makeup for their annual musicals and plays. Finally, I am also a member of the National Honor Society, and am involved with community service for various organizations in Cold Spring.

In the fall, I will be attending Williams College, where I hope to learn all that I can. I am currently interested in a major in Visual Arts or Creative Writing, possibly with a minor in Latin American Studies. I also hope to study abroad in a Spanish-speaking country during my time at Williams. In the future, I would love to further explore folk art, its significance and its symbolism, especially as it pertains to Latin American countries.

I have been so lucky to have been a part of the Haldane student community, and I am so excited to bring all that I have learned here with me into my future at Williams and beyond. I couldn’t have done it without the support of my teachers and other students, especially salutatorian Adele Westerhuis.

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