“This year, the Cum Laude Society had a particularly difficult job in determining the valedictorian and the salutatorian because of three extraordinary women,” said Academic Dean Tom Kardel.
Holding the strongest academic record in her class, Emma McGonigle ’21 will serve as valedictorian for the Class of 2021. A four-year senior, Emma is a Plainfield, New Hampshire, native. She is an Arts Scholar, Cullman Scholar, and Honor Board Proctor. Emma has served as the editor of both the yearbook and Kimball Union newspaper during her time at KUA. She plans to attend the Honors College at Northeastern University.
Historically, the salutatorian is the student who has the second-strongest academic record in their class. “Because of their exemplary academic records, and because the difference in the strength of their coursework was approaching zero, this year, Cum Laude chose two salutatorians,” says Kardel. The salutatorians of the Class of 2021 are Marian Zens ’21 of South Strafford, Vermont; and Emily Li ’21, of Hangzhou, China.
Marian, a three-year senior and day student. She is an Arts Scholar, Library Proctor, Co-President of the Book Club, Writing Center Coordinator, and a member of the Honor Board. Marian will attend Smith College in the fall. Emily, a four-year senior is an Arts Scholar, Cullman Scholar, and has served as Dorm Proctor during her time at Kimball Union. Emily will attend Columbia University in the fall. Both have been active in the theater program.
Emily, currently studying from home in distance learning, delivered a salutatory address
at All-School Meeting. Marian will deliver a salutatory address at Baccalaureate on May 21, and Emma will deliver her valedictory address at Commencement on May 22. Each event will be broadcast through KUA Live.
“Their academic records show that they all earned straight A’s in their time at the Academy,” said Kardel. “If we were to combine their three course loads, between them, they took 21 honors classes and 29 AP-level courses in their time at The Academy."