This year’s graduating class of Bishop Hendricken departed as close friends.
Principal Joseph Brennan, a 1972 graduate, said this class was close-knit and encouraged each other to do better in any achievement.
“Their camaraderie and great kindness permeated through this class from top to bottom,” said Brennan.
He said Hendricken has a competitive culture and that this year everybody tried their best as demonstrated by this year’s academic competition for rank. There were ties in both sixth and ninth place.
“Each one of the kids are all unique in their own way,” said Brennan. “Although they are all great students, they all contributed differently to the school.”
Nicholas Gardner, 18, graduated valedictorian this year and plans to attend Duke University as an engineering major.
Principal Joseph Brennan said along with being a great student and first, Gardner also led the marching band as the drum major.
He was co-editor for their literary and arts magazine that’s published twice a year, president of the debate team and co-founder of the service club.
Gardner is a National Merit Finalist and belongs to the National Honors Society, received the English Honors Society award and the Spanish Honors Society award.
“I will never forget the sense of brotherhood that formed over the four years I spent at Hendricken,” said Gardner.
Many people contributed to Gardner’s success and enjoyment of high school.
He said, “My father pushed me to find success, my mother comforted me when I failed and select teachers acted as role models who gave me goals to strive toward.”
Reaching this position was a friendly competition, said Gardner. His classmates were his biggest motivation to success.
Ranked second in the class, Christopher Bianco, 18, this year’s salutatorian will be attending Worcester Polytechnic Institute to major in computer science.
Throughout his time in high school Bianco was the captain of the math team, co-editor of literary and arts magazine, participated in the academic decathlon and was a peer minister and tutor.
Bianco is a National Merit Finalist, part of National Honor Society, Rhode Island Honor Society, National English Honor Society, National Spanish Honor Society and is also an Eagle Scout.
Brennan added that he was one of the top medal winners in the Academic Decathlon team while being the math team’s captain.
Bianco said he calls his friends from school his brothers.
“We shared many of the same experiences day after day, and we have supported each other in all of our various accomplishments,” said Bianco.
His parents and his teachers have consistently pushed him to give his full effort in all that he did, he said.
He said, “I’m glad I was pushed to go the extra step in everything that I did.”
Bianco was self-motivated in that he wanted to see all that he could accomplish and set himself apart from others by taking all the opportunities he got and took advantage of each one, he said.
Max Rademacher, 17, is ranked third in his graduating class and will attend Cornell University’s College of Engineering and intends to major in computer science.
His choice to pursue studies in computer science seems a natural. He was co-president and lead programmer of the school’s robotics team, participating in the math team and Rhode Island’s math team.
In 2011, Rademacher received the Intel Award for Excellence in Computer Science. In later years he was the 2014 semi-finalist in Rhode Island’s First Tech Challenge award in a robotics team competition. He is a member of the National, English, French and Mathematics Honors Societies.
Building a robotics lab from scratch in an unused wing of the school will be one of the things he will remember most from his time at Hendricken.
Brennan said he was “the great and helpful computer guy.”
Rademacher will also remember the moments he played foosball in the cafeteria with friends, playing cards in Mr. Morey’s room and especially beating him at the card game “Stress”.
He said his parents encouraged his interest in computer science. Thanks to Mr. Morey, “for developing my mathematical and problem-solving abilities,” Rademacher said. He also attributed his success to Mr. Notardonato and Mr. Theroux for their help and dedication to teaching.
Rademacher said his curiosity and the challenge of solving problems motivated him to excel in his work.
Sean Kelly, 18, will be attending the United States Naval Academy where he hasn’t finalized his major but may choose engineering, economics or political science with a minor in Spanish.
Kelly was ranked fourth this year and along with his academics, Kelly played for the football team for four years and ran indoor and outdoor track and field for four years as well. Kelly was also a member of the peer ministry his senior year. After three years as a member of the ambassador’s club, he was chosen as president his last year.
In 2014 he was awarded Bishop Hendricken’s Man of the Year award as well as the Ambassador’s Presidential Leadership award.
Kelly said he would remember the brotherhood and tremendous relationships he made at Hendricken.
“I’ll remember winning four super bowls and playing alongside my teammates, particularly in my senior year,” said Kelly.
His family, friends and teachers have all contributed to his success in school.
“I have relied tremendously on my family, learned immensely from the adults here and forged awesome memories with my brothers,” Kelly said.
Conor Garrahy, 17, will major in engineering when he attends Villanova University in the fall.
He has been a member of the ambassador’s club during his time at Hendricken, been a member of the peer ministry and played for the lacrosse team as captain for two years. He was also vice president of the student body.
On top of being ranked fifth, Garrahy is also member of the National, English, Mathematics and Foreign Language Honor Societies. The Providence Journal voted him second team All-State for lacrosse and voted Offensive Player of the Year for lacrosse three times.
“I will most vividly remember all my friends and each kid I played lacrosse with, they all greatly influenced my life,” said Garrahy.
Principal Brennan said Garrahy was a terrific lacrosse player and the top student athlete.
Garrahy said he will miss the sense of community that he felt each day as he entered the school.
His parents and friends have contributed the most to his success and enjoyment of high school.
“My parents ensured that I challenged myself while balancing the schoolwork with my social life,” said Garrahy.
Being the best he could be was what motivated Garrahy. He wanted to make sure he would have no regrets after his four years, he said.
Ryan Cox, 18, will attend Providence College this fall as a math and music double major.
Cox’s time spent at Hendricken was marked by his playing in the concert band as clarinet section leader and Young Men’s chorus as baritone section leader. He participated in the pit orchestra for spring musicals while playing piano. He was also one of the school’s peer ministers.
His efforts lead him to be All-State in Concert Band for clarinet and in 2012 he was honored to play with the American High School Honors Performance Band at Carnegie Hall for clarinet. He is also a member of the National, Mathematics, English and Italian Honor Societies.
He said the camaraderie of his friends is what will last after high school.
“Everything that I’ve done, the chorus trip to Hawaii, playing at Carnegie Hall and even just spending time in class has strengthened bonds of friendship that will last throughout his life,” said Cox.
He recognized that since most of his friends are in the top of the class with him, it has made for friendly competition between them.
Cox said, “Although they can be some of my biggest rivals, my friends and I support each other as well, and that’s something I’ve enjoyed.”
He said the reputation that Hendricken has for being a competitive place has rubbed off on him so that’s why he and his friends push one another.
Dan Miller, 18, plans to attend the Carroll School of Management at Boston College this fall. He has to decide on his major.
Miller played varsity baseball, was part of the peer ministry, ambassador’s club and the school’s newspaper.
Tied for sixth with Cox, Miller also received many awards for his achievements, some being the National, Math, English Honors Societies and the Bryant University Book Award.
“[What] I will remember the most about my high school years is the sense of brotherhood and camaraderie that I felt in the halls,” said Miller. “This atmosphere allowed me to grow as a person.”
He said his parents motivated him to be a better person, his teachers challenged him academically and his coaches taught him how to be a better teammate and how to handle adversity.
The healthy competition that existed between the students pushed him to excel in the classroom and the tradition of athletic excellence motivated his playing on the field.
Matthew Haronian, 18, will be attending Brown University and plans on majoring in a degree related to music technology or marketing.
He has been involved in theater and media arts while at Hendricken. As an underclassman he was also a runner for the cross-country team.
Haronian is a recipient of the National Merit Scholarship and a member of the National and Rhode Island Honor Societies.
“The people I’ve befriended and the connections I’ve made are definitely the most memorable part of high school for me,” said Haronian.
He said his parents and teachers care about his success and supported him throughout the process while his friends allowed him to enjoy the experience.
The ability to have choices for Haronian has motivated him to excel.
“I would rather have many options available to me, educational or career-oriented, than be bound by a bad decision,” said Haronian.
Benjamin Capuano, 18, plans to double major in biology and history with a minor in Spanish when he attends Providence College in the fall.
A member of the Academic Decathlon, Capuano was part of the champion winners 2013 and 2014. He also participated in indoor and outdoor track while contributing to the literary magazine.
He received awards from the National, English, Spanish, Mathematics Honors Societies and the Senator Claiborne Pell Award for Excellence in the Study of History.
The people he met from his trips through the Academic Decathlon are his most memorable memories from high school.
He said he couldn’t thank his friends who fostered an environment that has driven him to succeed.
“I owe a lot of my success to my parents who have continually pushed me to perform to the best of my ability,” said Capuano.
Capuano set personal goals for himself before entering high school that he wanted to achieve. He strived to better himself with setting new goals after accomplishing old ones to excel academically.
Joshua DeMelo, 17, will attend Clark University to study business administration.
He tied for ninth with Capuano while also participating in the Academic Decathlon for the two-time state champions team. He was also the editor-in-chief of the literary magazine.
He received the National, English and Mathematics Honor Societies and Rhode Island Chemistry Competition third place overall.
Like many of the other boys, he will always remember the brotherhood that bound them all together. He said his teachers had to be thanked for their passion and their push to reach his full potential.
“After seeing how hard my father has worked to give me the opportunities that I have, I know that it is my responsibility to take advantage of them,” said DeMelo.