Salutatorian Julie MacDonell

  • "What do you value most in life?" began Class of 2010 Salutatorian Julie MacDonell in her address, entitled Do Unto Others."I wasn’t sure what the right answer was," Julie admitted. "I asked my classmates and family the very same question and received a surprising variety of answers. ‘Intellect,’ some said. ‘Athletic ability,’ argued others. One person (who I won’t name)," Julie deliberately paused and glanced with a smile at a specific someone, "even suggested ‘knowledge of Lady Gaga lyrics.’"

    After thirteen years of learning together in one of the highest-achieving classes of Sayville School District, Julie shared with her classmates her view on the most enduring lesson—the one they learned in kindergarten—"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

    "Achievements and accolades decorate the resumes of the Class of 2010, but this class is also filled with students who understand the Golden Rule, the simple gifts of charity and generosity," Julie stated. "I feel both humbled and fortunate to have borne witness to these young women and men who have the ability to look beyond themselves and channel their talents into a variety of different disciplines, reaching out to others in an effort to make the world a better place."

    Julie cited some examples of the Golden Rule in the actions and deeds of her classmates, realizing that many acted heroically every day, caring for relatives or in volunteer work:

    •"Will Tessa Buono, Nick Walsh, and Conrad Volle further their flourishing ‘green’ initiatives despite the lucrative lure of executive positions with companies such as British Petroleum?"

    •"Will Gary Leigh-Manuel, Chris Giammatteo, and Zach Haller continue to carry people out of burning buildings once they become husbands and fathers?"

    •"Will Eagle Scouts Nick Mancuso, Mike Andres, Quentin Hoffman, and Chris Baio expand on their community-service projects as adults, even when the pressure of their careers is all-consuming?"

    •"Will S.A.D.D. volunteers Lexie Galan, Cassie Samartano, and Mary Ring continue to encourage their peers to abstain from destructive decisions?"

    •"And what about our Vida de Educere Crew—a group of seniors who have made it their mission to ‘make a difference and prove that anything is possible.’ Will these young men make a difference by continuing their altruistic endeavors, even when the task seems overwhelming?"

    Quoting from Invictus by poet William Ernest Henley (I am the master of my fate,/I am the captain of my soul.), Julie explained that "we must respond with peace and grace" when facing life’s challenges; by carrying "the spirit of compassion for ourselves and for others…, we become the captains of our souls and only then can we truly master our fates....When we choose to ‘do unto others,’ we live courageously and lead great lives."

    Thanking both her kindergarten teacher Mrs. MacAllister and her sister, also a kindergarten teacher: for teaching her life’s most valuable lesson and for showing her how it applies everyday, Julie wished with a trembly voice "peace and serendipity as you steer your souls and navigate life’s endless adventures. Congratulations Class of 2010 and good luck!"

ang jul tes doug con.jpg
sal and val.jpg
front and center.jpg
leading the procession.jpg