Achievements recognized with virtual awards assembly, senior celebration


Screenshot from slideshow

The student awards assembly, along with the senior celebration, was presented on June 4 to pay tribute to student awards and achievements. Due to current circumstances, the celebrations were held through Zoom using presentations and slideshows.

Caroline Hohner, Reporter

U-High students tuned in to Zoom to commemorate student achievement through virtual slideshow and video presentations at the student awards assembly and at the senior celebration on June 4. This year’s awards assembly was shorter than previous years as it excluded department awards.

To open the student awards assembly, Ana Campos, dean of students, requested a moment of silence for the death of George Floyd and in recognition of institutionalized racism in America, and she addressed U-High’s resilience in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

“It felt like it was important to honor this tradition that we have in the high school,” Ms. Campos said in an interview later. “There was no way that we could have proceeded without acknowledging current events and their impact not only on the rest of the world, but very much so to our own black students, black staff, black faculty in our own community.”

Students were honored with service and citizenship awards, and memorial awards were awarded to seniors who embody the passions and attributes recognized by the award. Along with individual student awards, Principal Citation Awards recognized student organizations for their achievements and positive impact.

The assembly concluded with the student-determined Phoenix Awards, which recognize students from each grade who stand out for their positive contributions to the U-High community.

Senior Emily Zhang received her grade’s Service and Phoenix awards.

“I would not be here without my classmates, my friends, everyone who has made my high school experience so rich,” Emily said. “We’ve been able to accomplish a lot of things I think, at face value people might not have thought were possible but we were able to do, so I’m really proud of that and grateful for my class.”

Almost 300 students attended the virtual assembly.

“This is our final time together, today, this morning, as a community. And it’s been a rough 83 days. This is not the year anyone wanted,” Ms. Campos said in an interview. “The fact that we had 300 people at that assembly today: I couldn’t be happier, it’s really remarkable.”

During the senior celebration, a video montage of graduating seniors accompanied by video of applauding family members and faculty took the place of U-High’s traditional senior campus parade. The montage was streamed on YouTube Premiere, available for anyone to view.

 “I definitely think no matter what situation we’re in, this is definitely a time to be grateful and happy about how much we’ve gone through, how much we’ve accomplished over the past four years together as a class and as individuals,” Emily said. “I’m super thankful that as a community we’re still making a huge effort to recognize everyone.”

Recordings of both the student awards assembly and the senior celebration are available to watch online. 


Alan Stern Award: Risa Cohen and Leland Culver

Citizenship Awards: 

9th grade: Lorelei Deakin and Lauren Tapper

10th grade: Asha Bahroos and Yannik Leuz

11th grade: Jayne Crouthamel, Lea Rebollo Baum, Elena Stern and Lilah Wallach

12th grade: Kepler Boonstra, Vive Corré, Anjali Prachand and Anna Stephanov

Brent Cawelti Award: Stanley Shapiro and Donna Tong

David Scheunemann Award: Nick Bridges

Service Awards:

9th grade: Jade Deng and Téa Tamburo

10th grade: Asha Bahroos and Kennedi Bickham

11th grade: Eliza Doss, Olivia Griffin, Sana Shahul and Zach Sharp

12th grade: Ben Cifu, Gershon Stein, Franzi Wild and Emily Zhang

Senior Service Awards: Ben Cifu and John Freeman

IHSA Class 1A State Champions: Boys soccer and girls tennis

Principal Citation Awards: Black Students’ Association for the Martin Luther King Assembly, FIRST Robotics Competition Team 8096 Cache Money, Latinos Unidos, Ouroboros Review (Literary Translation Club), Social Justice Week Committee, Students with Disabilities Association and Student Council. 

Faith Dremmer Award: Anna Stephanov

Phoenix Awards, determined by students:

9th grade: Ana Cucalon

10th grade: Asha Bahroos

11th grade: Avi Keysar

12th grade: Emily Zhang