Loyola Blakefield Celebrates 169th Commencement

“Being a Loyola Blakefield student in the Class of 2021 hasn’t always been easy. But it’s been worth it. And I couldn’t imagine a better group of guys to go through the highs and lows of high school with. And we did it together. In fact, if there’s one word I could find to describe the past four years, it would be 'together.' Because even if we’re not the most athletic class in school history (which, in my unbiased opinion, we are), and even if we’re not the smartest class in school history (which, again, we are), and even if there is no way to quantify the fact that we’re the best looking class in school history, I can promise you one thing: We are all brothers, and we’re gonna be there for each other, no matter what.” – Will Erdman '21

Loyola Blakefield's 169th Commencement

COVID-19 and Brood X cicadas were not going to stop them. The Class of 2021, made up of 193 Dons, officially walked across the Hollow and graduated as Men for Others on the morning of Saturday, June 5, during our 169th Commencement Ceremony & Baccalaureate Mass. This is the 39th consecutive year that graduation was held in the Hollow. We were also excited to welcome back Dons from the Classes of 1970 and 1971 in celebration of their 50th anniversary.
The Baccalaureate Mass was celebrated by School Chaplain Rev. Bruce Steggert, SJ, which included reflections from Mateen Kane and Matthew Fleschner. During the commencement ceremony, opening remarks were presented by Andrew Abraham, and this year's commencement speech was provided by Will Erdman. You can watch the entire ceremony below.


The following awards were presented before the conferral of diplomas.

THE REV. FATHER LLOYD D. GEORGE, S.J. AWARD is presented to that member of the graduating class who has achieved the highest grade-point average through the mid-point of his senior year. This award was presented to Aidan Brehm.

THE REV. ANTHONY J. ZEITS, S.J. AWARD, presented by the Loyola Mothers’ Club to a Senior who has demonstrated outstanding sportsmanship and leadership on and off the athletic field. This award was presented to Matthew Dixon & John Dixon.

THE DOCTOR FORD LOKER AWARD is presented by the Loyola Fathers’ Club to a Senior who holds a varsity letter and is outstanding for academic excellence. This award was presented to Aaron Ray.

THE MATTHEW J. RUSSELL AWARD, established by the graduating Class of 1986, is presented to a Senior whose commitment to God, family and friends has been exemplified by a quiet, sensitive, and selfless concern for others. The recipient of this award was Michael Moreno.

THE MICHAEL J. IAMPIERI AWARD was established to honor Mr. Michael Iampieri, a beloved member of the Loyola Blakefield faculty from 1966 to 2007. During his tenure, Mr. Iampieri founded the School’s art department and taught art to generations of young men over four decades. The Michael J. Iampieri Award is presented to a graduating senior who has demonstrated personal and spiritual growth through his pursuit of creative self-expression and his achievements in the arts. This award was presented to Kintrez Fowlkes.

THE REV. JAMES F. SALMON, S.J., AWARD is presented to that graduate who has demonstrated leadership in student activities and scholarship in Science and Religious Studies. This year’s recipient was Spencer Smith.

REV. ALOYSIUS P. MCGONIGAL, S.J., was a chaplain whose extraordinary service to his fellow men ended with his death in Vietnam. The Rev. Aloysius P. McGonigal, S.J., Award is presented by the Loyola Fathers’ Club to a Senior who has worked to full capacity in and out of the classroom but has received little recognition for his tenacious spirit. The award was presented to Trey Oakley.

THE DENNIS B. WOOLFORD “CURA PERSONALIS” AWARD is given in loving memory of Dennis B. Woolford class of 2010. Although Dennis was a gifted athlete who started on 8 MIAA championship teams including the undefeated 2008 Football team, Dennis will always be remembered for his kind heart, free spirit and a smile that would light up the room. He considered every Don his best friend and every teammate his brother. This award is given to a student or faculty member of Loyola Blakefield who best represents "care for the individual person." This award was presented to John Rineman & Julia Rineman.
THE JOHN H. WEETENKAMP III AWARD is presented to a graduating senior who has been caring to his peers and demonstrated dedication to the mission of Loyola Blakefield. He is a young man who has embodied the words of Saint Ignatius by his actions and has served his fellow Dons and others generously through the Campus Ministry and Service programs as well as other opportunities. The recipient of this award was Andrew Abraham.

THE KENNETH C. MONTAGUE SERVICE & JUSTICE AWARD was established in honor of Mr. Ken Montague ’60, a dutiful public servant and attorney admired for his ethics and courage. The first Black student to attend Loyola Blakefield, Mr. Montague is a pioneer who inspires current and future Dons to pursue a life dedicated to justice and social leadership. His service in the Peace Corps inspired a lifetime of dedication to a variety of civic, social, and humanitarian causes. The award is presented to a graduating senior whose words and deeds embody the bravery, spirit, and commitment to service demonstrated by Mr. Montague’s life and career. The recipient of this inaugural award was Jordan Andrews.

THE LOYOLA ALUMNI AWARD is presented to the Senior who is most conspicuous for school spirit, leadership and excellence in studies. The recipient of this award was Will Stocksdale.

THE DAVID A. KENNEDY AWARD was established by the Alumni Association to honor Mr. David A. Kennedy, teacher and registrar at Loyola from 1937 to 1977. This award is presented annually to that member of the graduating class who, through unselfish contribution of academic skills, personal talents, and social values in service to Loyola Blakefield and to the community at large, best embodies the Ignatian principle of “men for others.” This award was presented to Kevin Lankford.

THE LOYOLA AWARD, founded in honor of the Rev. John F. Dustin, S.J., is awarded to the most representative member of the graduating class for excellence in scholastic achievement and participation in extra-curricular activities. This award was presented to Jake Taylor.
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