Thank You, DeMatha


Thomas Krukar, Editor in Chief

As the 2021-22 school year comes to a close, many seniors are spending time reflecting on their years at DeMatha. The class of 2022 has had a unique DeMatha experience to say the least, as the Covid-19 pandemic changed our lives in ways that we could have never previously imagined.

The senior class persevered through the uncertainty of the pandemic while staying focused on achieving goals inside and outside of the classroom. At the start of our freshman year, nobody could have pictured having to learn virtually for an entire school year, but the class of 2022, along with other students at DeMatha, were able to make the proper adjustments to successfully navigate the pandemic’s challenges.

The class of 2022 could not have completed this long journey without the help and support of DeMatha’s faculty and staff. Throughout my four years at the school, I have seen the faculty make sacrifices on behalf of their students. I have always felt that the teachers and administrators at DeMatha truly care about the well-being of their students, and the relationships between the faculty and students at DeMatha have allowed students to connect with their teachers on a more personal level.

When you first step foot on DeMatha’s campus at the beginning of freshman year, you often hear that DeMatha is more than just a school. I think that for many students these words don’t fully register until several years down the line, after they have the chance to form special bonds with classmates and teachers.

For me personally, the beginning of my time at DeMatha felt as if I was fulfilling a family obligation to attend the school. My dad and my brother, along with my two uncles, had all graduated from the school. My grandmother worked in the attendance office for over 20 years. To be honest, I didn’t really put much thought into the decision to attend DeMatha for high school. It was just what the boys in my family did. Although it felt good to continue the family tradition of attending DeMatha, I wouldn’t say that I necessarily felt a deep connection towards the school.

But as time wore on, I could feel myself becoming more immersed in the family environment that DeMatha is known for. For the first time in my academic career, I found myself enjoying going to school (to a certain degree), and I would go out of my way to interact with fellow students and teachers. Each year at DeMatha has been more enjoyable than the year before it, which I feel is the sign of a very good school.

The class of 2022 has seen lots of changes in our time at DeMatha. We have had three different deans of students, along with new coaches in basketball, football, and lacrosse. Several longstanding teachers retired, and new teachers came in to fill their place. But amidst all the change occurring at the school, the sense of togetherness and brotherhood never felt absent. The sense of community at DeMatha is something that has been present at the school for a long time, and will continue to be an important part of the school’s identity no matter who is in charge.

The brotherhood at DeMatha is something that can be cherished and felt for the rest of your life. Just because one leaves the school does not mean that the sense of belonging to the DeMatha community is lost or forgotten. DeMatha alumni continue to look out for each other well past their days at the school, and I expect this senior class to be no different. There’s a reason why so many DeMatha graduates return to work at the school when they become adults. They care deeply about the school’s well-being and desire to be fully involved in the school community after experiencing the school’s sense of unity as a student.

Reflecting on the past four years, I realize that the relationships and moments I made at this school will last a lifetime. The lessons I learned from fellow students and teachers will be valuable as I enter college, and further down the line as I enter adulthood. The effects of my DeMatha education will be felt long after graduation, and the relationships formed in my time at the school will hopefully last a lifetime. In truth, one’s DeMatha experience does not end after four years, but rather it continues long after they walk down the halls for a final time. In my time reflecting on the past four years, I’ve come to the realization that even though I am leaving the school, DeMatha will forever be a part of my identity.

I think that I speak for all seniors when I say that it feels like the past four years have flown by. Maybe it was the year and a half of in-person school lost to the Covid-19 pandemic, but it truly feels like it was just yesterday when I walked through the main entrance to go to freshman orientation.

I hope that the class of 2022 will be remembered for their perseverance through the difficult times brought on by the pandemic, and for the togetherness and sense of community that we exhibited. One might think that an event such as a pandemic would push students further apart and separate them from their school community, but I feel as if the opposite occurred with the class of 2022. It seems like an obvious statement, but in life when you persevere through difficult times and come out successful on the other end, you seem to form a special bond with those around you. I think that this is the case with the class of 2022. We got through difficult times, and I can speak for everyone when I say we feel very thankful for those who helped us get through uncertain times.

The best way I can describe leaving DeMatha is bittersweet. I’m certainly thankful for the lessons and relationships formed in the past four years, and I feel that DeMatha has provided the necessary groundwork to help propel my life in the “real world.” It’s likely that most seniors would say that they are ready to move on to the next chapter of their lives and academic careers. Many members of this senior class will go on to do extraordinary things while making a positive impact on the world. But as the senior class goes their separate ways and strives to make a positive impact in whatever they do, one thing will always connect us. We are the DeMatha class of 2022, and that can never be taken away or diminished.

Oftentimes in life, we don’t realize how good we had things until something important is taken away from us, or we move on to something else. That’s why it’s so vital to cherish and embrace the special moments that happen in life instead of constantly worrying about what might happen in the future. We may not have realized it at the time, but those moments experienced in our four years at DeMatha will be remembered for the rest of our lives, and they will be shared with others as time goes on.

So as the class of 2022 sings “One DeMatha” one final time at graduation, just know that we ourselves may be leaving DeMatha, but DeMatha will never leave us. The relationships, lessons, and memories are eternal in our hearts and minds. The class of 2022 are DeMatha brothers today, and will be DeMatha brothers forever.