Dream come true: Archer celebrates annual Founder’s Day and Senior Recognition Ceremony


Photo credit: Lucia Ponti

Marissa Gendy (’22) and the senior class cheer for the commencement of the Founders Day and Senior Recognition Ceremony with Head of School Elizabeth English’s speech. “Well, in the immortal words of Taylor Swift, I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling 22,” English said.

By Maia Alvarez and Jullie Cach

“Hello, dream come true. Hello Archer.” This was the opening remark of co-founder Dr. Diana Meehan, celebrating Archer’s 26 years of education and female empowerment. On Wednesday afternoon, Nov. 10, students, faculty, staff and parents of the Class of 2022 attended this year’s Founders Day and Senior Recognition Ceremony.

Each year, the Archer community gathers to celebrate the founders who established Archer: Dr. Diana Meehan, Victoria Shorr and Megan Callaway. This tradition honors the past and present leadership from the founders to the current senior class.

Unlike the previous year, the ceremony took place in-person with upper school students and parents in the courtyard. Middle school watched from their respective mentorships through Zoom. The ceremony began with Head of School Elizabeth English reminding the student body of this year’s theme of intention, while sharing advice to the senior class.

“Let’s bring the joy forward a little more. You are so determined. I’m not worried about your achievement. I’ve seen you achieve. I know what you will achieve,” English said. “Don’t put the joy on hold because you were robbed of some time.” 

Following English’s speech, Student Body President Langdon Janos (’22) emphasized her gratitude for the Archer campus and community.

“Thank you for giving us a place to discover our passions, to take risks and to be empowered. Thank you founders for the gift that is Archer,” Janos said.

Meehan often addresses the community on Founders Day, speaking about the history of Archer’s founding and the values she wishes to share with the current students. She gave a few words of advice, stating that fear is one of the most powerful emotions and that “the only antidote to fear is action.”

One of the things that I think is most interesting about love is it’s a verb. Love is an action. It’s not a thing. Case in point — founding Archer,” Meehan said.

This was echoed in grade dean and English teacher Kathleen Bergen’s speech, who spoke to the class of 2022’s reliance and strength.

These sage seniors are the youngest keepers of wisdom I have ever known,” Bergen said. “They have taught me lessons about tenacity and resilience that have humbled me.” 

Following Bergen’s speech was the Senior Recognition Ceremony. Seniors received a white rose along with a pin from the Dean of Students Life, Equity, and Inclusion Samantha Hazell-O’Brien and the Director of Academic Programs Reed Farley. This was the first of many events to commend the senior class.

Along with the speeches, the upper school orchestra and the Unaccompanied Minors also performed in honor of the event. The upper school orchestra’s performance rang through the courtyard, playing “The Incredibles” theme song by Michael Giacchino, arranged by John Moss. Additionally, the Unaccompanied Minors performed “Sunlight” by Hozier and closed the ceremony with the school song “Within the Walls of Archer,” carrying on the annual tradition.

Janos concluded her speech with a message of gratitude for the founder’s work in establishing Archer.

“So, Archer community, let us cherish the opportunity that our founders have given us. And let us never forget how lucky we are to have each other,” Janos said. “Not everyone gets the chance to have over 500 sisters.”

The Unaccompanied Minors, Archer’s upper school a cappella group, perform the school song, “Within the Walls of Archer” at the end of the ceremony.