EHHS Graduates Celebrate Challenges, Victories at Commencement
Posted on 06/16/2022
EHHS Commencement 2022

397 graduates received their East Hartford High School diplomas and turned their tassels during the Commencement Exercises held on June 9 on the EHHS Athletic Field. The Class of 2022 celebrated their graduation with family, friends, teachers, and East Hartford town and school district leaders while acknowledging the difficult road that led to this triumphant day.


“I have seen firsthand how we, as a class, are able to persevere through the impossible and adapt as needed, although our last four years have been anything but ideal,” said Class President Faith Anane during her commencement speech. “I’m so happy that I was able to hold your hands through the finish line.”

This class spent more than half of their high school years learning in a pandemic. Many students said this took a toll on them academically, socially and mentally.

In his commencement speech, Valedictorian Tam Nguyen discussed his personal struggles with mental health, and said it was his family, friends and community who helped him get through it.

“I’m glad to have been a part of a community that genuinely cares for one another and that treats one another with kindness and respect. To them, thank you for making high school something that I will always look back on and smile no matter the circumstance,” said Nguyen.

Salutatorian An Nguyen also endured intense personal challenges during her time in high school. In the beginning of her senior year, she was involved in a near-fatal automobile accident, but persevered to remain a top scholar and reach her goals.

She said in her commencement speech, “I want you all to know that everything that happened to us in high school serves a purpose in our lives. All of the hardships that we went through, all of the responsibilities that we had to take on, all of the relationships that we built and lost along the way, it shaped us into the people we are today.”

Their resiliency as individuals and as a class was on stage with them as they took these final steps as East Hartford High School students.

Superintendent of East Hartford Public Schools Nathan Quesnel said in his address, “I’ve been thinking a lot about you as graduates. I’ve been thinking about what you’ve worked through specifically over the past two years. A lot of people are going to talk about all of the challenges of the past two years. A lot of people are going to talk about what you’ve lost. A lot of good people are going to talk about the hardship and certainly they’re right. But the reality is when I think of this class, I think of a class who has encountered incredible odds and had even greater victories.”

Those victories include earning more than $4 million in scholarships as a class.

Embodying the East Hartford High School motto of “Begin, Build, Become,” these graduates are prepared for what comes next. 85% will attend 2 or 4-year colleges, 7% will enter the military, 5% will attend trade or technical schools, and 4% are beginning their careers, many entering their family businesses.

East Hartford High School Teacher of the Year Tracy Snyder said, “You’re ready to move on into your new beginning, to build a bright future, and become someone that you can be proud of.”