May 2023

John Avlon ’91 to Speak at 2023 Graduation

This year’s Graduation speaker is John Avlon, Milton Academy Class of 1991. John is an award-winning journalist and author of six books, including Lincoln & the Fight for Peace and Washington’s Farewell. He is a CNN senior political analyst and anchor, known for his “Reality Check” segments across the network. Previously, he was the editor-in-chief of The Daily Beast and chief speechwriter for the mayor of New York City during the attacks of September 11, 2001. He lives in New York with his wife, Margaret Hoover, and their two children, Jack and Toula Lou.

Graduation Details

This year’s graduation ceremony will be held on the lawn in front of Robert Saltonstall Gymnasium on Friday, June 9, at 9:30 a.m, rain or shine. Graduates should arrive at 8 a.m. A live stream of the event will be linked from Milton’s homepage on the morning of the ceremony. The formal graduation procession begins at Straus Library. A bagpiper then leads the faculty and seniors in a march to their seats.

More Graduation Details

Guests will not be permitted to leave their assigned seats to take photos. A professional photographer will take pictures of each graduating senior. You will receive proofs over the summer, at which time you can decide whether or not to order copies. You are under no obligation to make a purchase.

Parking and traffic
We will make special arrangements for parking and traffic for graduation. All parking will take place on Upton Field and in the Junior Building parking lot. Our staff, with assistance from the Milton police, will direct you. Please do not park on Voses Lane, Randolph Avenue, or Centre Street.

Because of the number of people on campus, Academy Road, which runs in front of the Robert Saltonstall Gym and the main campus dormitories, will be closed from 9:30 p.m. on Thursday until about 1:45 p.m. on Friday. Parents who wish to load belongings from dorm rooms during these times should use the access road behind the dormitories.

Accessibility needs
If a member of your party needs to be dropped off close to the ceremony site or requires accessibility access, please communicate with a campus safety officer upon your arrival to campus on the morning of graduation and he or she will make appropriate arrangements. Please remember that no cars will be allowed down past the ceremony site after 9:00am.

Graduation parties
We will be entering the season of celebrations. Each year we ask families to stand firm in discouraging risky behaviors, including the use of alcohol and drugs, that jeopardize the well-being of those we celebrate. Please comply with all laws regarding substances and with all guidelines for social gatherings.

Milton’s New Dean of College Counseling

Milton’s New Dean of College Counseling

This coming July, Milton Academy is delighted to welcome the school’s next dean of college counseling, Laurén Carter. Laurén’s career spans more than three decades in the college admission and counseling profession—with more than 20 of those years spent directing independent schools’ college counseling programs. As college admissions become more and more competitive, Milton’s college counseling office plays an increasingly critical role in supporting students in choosing the best college or university for them. The school couldn’t be happier to have Laurén joining to lead those efforts. 

read more

Katherine Risden and Chris Amodeo Selected as Head Monitors

Congratulations to Katherine Risden ’24 and Chris Amodeo ’24, who were elected by their peers as co-Head Monitors for the 2023–24 academic year. They were selected out of a field of 16 initial candidates.

Chris is a boarding student in Goodwin House from West Valley, New York, and Katherine is a boarding student in Millet House from Kingston, Jamaica. As Head Monitors, Chris and Katherine will lead the student Self-Governing Association (SGA) Council and serve as liaisons between Upper School students and Milton’s faculty and administrators.

They succeed outgoing Head Monitors Robin Storey ’23 and Victor Chen ’23.

Seniors Go “On Project”

From volunteering to shadowing professionals, to creating art and performances, to diving deeper into their academic passions, members of the Class of 2023 are well on their way toward completing their senior projects. 

Senior projects are a Milton tradition. Seniors may elect to go “on project” by finishing their courses and spending the month of May working on a full or half project on a topic of their choice. Topics must be approved and sponsored by a faculty member, and the students must dedicate a certain number of hours to their project. 

This year’s senior projects include internships at Massachusetts General Hospital and Newton Wellesley Hospital, a college athletic department, in various laboratories and tech companies, and a veterinary office. Seniors are also volunteering in local classrooms—including in the Lower and Middle Schools—for environmental nonprofits and community farms, and helping in local public schools. Art and research topics—which result in performances, exhibitions, films, and demonstrations at the senior project fair— include Russian literature and culture; artificial intelligence; South Asian authors; social change through art; immigration; forensics in criminal investigations; ceramics and sculpture.

Senior projects culminate in the Senior Project Fair in the Athletic and Convocation Center (ACC) rink on Wednesday, June 7, at 1:30 p.m.

Humanities Workshop Hosts Student Conference on Public Health

This past weekend, Milton Academy students participated in the Humanities Workshop’s Student Conference on Public Health hosted at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate. The goal of the Humanities Workshop is to show students how key themes prominent in humanities studies—in particular, the importance of empathy and compassion—can be instrumental in working to solve the world’s complex problems. Urged by a COVID pandemic that has raised immediate concern about the safety and well-being of our school communities and forced us to consider the intersection of health and justice, the Humanities Workshop chose PUBLIC HEALTH/GLOBAL HEALTH as this year’s theme. The conference featured keynote speaker Dr. Bisola Ojikutu, Executive Director of Boston’s Public Health Commission, and showcased students’ learning about public health.

View photos from the event and click on this video below to watch the conference speeches.

Holocaust Survivor Judy Josephs Shares Her Story

Milton observed Holocaust Remembrance Day with a powerful assembly hosted by the Jewish Student Union and messages from guest speaker and Holocaust survivor Judy Josephs. Ms. Josephs was a young girl growing up in Poland when the Nazis invaded; she was able to survive by concealing her Jewish identity for years until liberation. Her parents and siblings were murdered.

Antisemitism continues to affect the lives of Jewish people in the U.S. and worldwide. Ms. Josephs’ story reminds us of the danger of hatred. She asked the audience to meet differences with acceptance.

“Stretch out your hands,” Ms. Josephs encouraged students. “Stretch out your minds, stretch out your hearts. Regardless of race, color, or religion, we are all people. Do not forget it.”

Parents’ Association News and Notes

As the end of the year is right around the corner, we are excited for our final two USPA events of the year:

  • Friday, June 2, 2023 from 2–5 p.m. –  Spring Fling
  • Monday, June 5 from 6–7:30 p.m. – Class I Parents Cocktail Reception (after Prom Departure) in Straus

Thank you so much for all of your support and engagement during USPA meetings and events. We are most grateful.

Most recently, your extraordinary generosity allowed us to host a spectacular Faculty and Staff Appreciation Day celebration on Thursday, April 20. Thanks to your generous donations, we held a truly amazing raffle with incredible prize packages for Milton faculty and staff. We were able to offer over 60 prizes, which implies 60 winners! Members of the faculty and staff won a MacBook Pro; two MacBook Airs; three iPads; two Apple watch; two AirPods; two Bose Noise cancelling headphones; tickets to the Celtics and Red Sox; many generous restaurant gift cards; shopping gift cards from Amazon, Best Buy, Bath and Body and more; vacation getaways; wonderful service gift certificates; and so much more. The faculty and staff were so excited and grateful! Thank you for making this celebration and raffle truly amazing!

Looking forward to next year, we are seeking USPA volunteers for the 2023–2024 school year. If you are interested, kindly reach out to

Many thanks and have a safe, restful, and relaxing spring and summer.

Teena Kamal, USPA President

Development News

The Milton Faculty bring innovation to the classroom and care for the education of Milton students each day. As we approach the end of the school year please consider supporting our faculty with a gift to the Milton Fund by visiting If you have questions about the Milton Fund or making a gift, please contact Alana McGrath, Annual Giving Officer, at or (617) 898-2267.

Events and Engagement
There are many ways to support Milton and create new Milton moments by engaging with the school. From attending social or professional events to volunteering or participating in affinity groups, the Alumni and Parent Engagement team is here to help you stay connected! Sign up to volunteer and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter for more opportunities to engage with the Milton community.

Event Recordings
To view recordings of recent events, such as “Life at Milton: A Conversation with Anika Walker-Johnson, Director of Residential Life” or “Going The Distance: Milton’s Professional Athletes with the late Eli A. Wolff ’95,” please visit

Head Over Heels Sets a Classic Story to an 80s Soundtrack

This past weekend’s spring musical, Head Over Heels, reimagined a 16th-century royal love tale—told mostly in iambic pentameter—and featured the music of the 1980s rock band The Go-Gos. Its mash-up of music, visuals, and script work, however, told a story as old as time.

The musical adapted the plot of The Countess of Pembroke’s Arcadia by Philip Sidney, which was written in the late 1500s. It tells the story of the royal family in a kingdom, Arcadia, whose future depends on the family avoiding four predictions by an oracle. Set to some of The Go-Gos’ most recognizable hits as well as their lesser-known songs, the show was magical, dramatic, and fun.

View photos from the performance.

Featured Video

"Lucky Charms"

On May 12, Milton hosted a film festival, showcasing the work of Milton’s filmmaking students. Watch this trailer of Lucky Charms by Meredith Monnich (and starring Julia Torrey). The evening also featured films by Hayes Benzan, Jaiden Delva, Sam Goldings, Danny Li, Finn McLaughlin, Gus Reynolds, Guthrie Meyer, AP Palacio, Luis Valencia Mondragon, Nicholas Chiasson, Leo Demissie, Jackson Hughes-Page, Connor McGuirk, Mateo, Buyu, Yevgeniya Regent, Louis Chiasson, Jack Graham, and Luke Witkowski.
Watch all the trailers for the film festival.

Featured Photos

Science Symposium

Students in advanced science courses present their projects in biology, physics, chemistry, and environmental science during the annual Science Symposium in (and outside of) the Pritzker Science Center.
View more photos of the event.

Bisbee Tea

Milton’s history students awarded the prestigious Bisbee Prize gathered with history department faculty last Thursday afternoon at the annual Bisbee Tea event. The winners, selected by their teachers for outstanding research on their U.S. History papers, presented their work and fielded questions from faculty and peers.
View more photos of the event.

Things You Can Do

Milton’s actors performed in this spring’s 1212 play, Things You Can Do by playwright Kristen Palmer. Palmer was this spring’s Melissa Dilworth Gold Visting Artist and during her visit to campus, the cast and crew—which included Ella Goldberg ’24, Zain “Z” Sheikh ’24, Keira Zhuo ’24, Soraya Darvish ’24, Ly Tanzi ’26, and Abigail Song ’24—had an opportunity to meet with Palmer and rehearse some scenes for her feedback. 
View more photos of the performance.

Arts Night

A lively, night-long moveable feast, Arts Night showcases the many artistic talents at Milton as students share the diversity of their work with audiences in the Kellner Performing Arts Center.
View more photos of the night’s performances.

Improv in the Studio

Without a sound, this group of improv students form the shape of a pirate ship during a workshop led by members of the Improvised Shakespeare Company. During their visit to campus, the improv trio led hilarious and inspirational workshops teaching students the art of improvisation.
View more photos of the workshop.

A Stroll Through the Garden

Students take a walk around the path of Milton’s new Reflective Garden, located outside the Apthorp Chapel. Head of School Todd Bland invited students from K–12 to celebrate the opening of the Garden on May 1.
View photos of the opening celebration.

Centre Connection

Centre Connection, Milton's online newsletter for parents, is published five times each year through the efforts of the Milton Academy Communication Office and Parents' Association volunteers.

Communication Office

Sarah Abrams
Marisa Donelan
Eileen Newman
Esten Perez
Gregory White