Commencement 2014 in Our Students’ Voices


Wheelock’s Commencement was held May 16, 2014 at Temple Israel (Undergraduate Ceremony) and Wheelock Family Theatre (Graduate Ceremony) in Boston, MA. Here are four videos of commencement speeches and performances from that day featuring the voices of our talented students.

1. Graduating Seniors Lissa Piercy and Guillermo Caballero drew laughs and loud applause with their outstanding spoken word performance that summed up the full range of their Wheelock experiences, from student protests to procrastinating writing papers.

2. Graduating Senior Aaron Swiniuch kicked off the ceremony with a stirring performance of the song “Finding Wonderland” from Wonderland: the Musical.

3. Student Speaker Mary McNeil spoke about the growth she has seen in her classmates. “In four short years, the Senior Class of 2014 has transformed from a group of ‘unapologetic idealists’ into a group that is ‘tough enough’ to turn their dreams into reality,” she said. “As future social workers, teachers, child life workers, advocates, historians, artists, writers, thinkers, and doers, we are determined to work in our respective communities and rewrite our histories every single day.”

4. Student Speaker Natasha M. Antoniak ’14MS told a parable about mankind’s endless struggle between good and evil and encouraged her classmates to make the world a better place by ‘feeding the good.’ “So how can we also inspire a world of good and improve the lives of those around us?” she said. “In short, we too, must ‘feed the good.’ I believe this can happen as we internalize as well as employ the education we’ve received here as we go throughout the world and communities before us….Feeding the good leads to healing, resilience, and the perpetuation of more good,” Antoniak said. “Therefore, when we witness injustice, we must continue to stand and advocate and, thus, feed the good. When we face fierce disagreements or see conflict amidst communities, we must seek to genuinely understand rather than dismiss others and, thus, feed the good. When we see the lonely, poor in spirit, outcast and ill, we must love them—not avoid or neglect them—and feed the good.”

Watch more videos, see photos, learn more about the honorees, and read excerpts from their addresses.