Class Night Prefect’s Charge

Given by Kendall Killian on May 18, 2018


When people ask me what I love about Cambridge, I always answer: the people. Because as great as Cambridge is, with its principles, education, and community, without its people, it would not be the school I’ve come to love, or call a second home. So tonight, as I have your attention, I’d like to recognize some of the people who have impacted me during my time here. I will then discuss a specific characteristic held by all of those people, and encourage our community to adopt that virtue.

Tonight, I will limit myself to recognizing and thanking several special faculty members, because I would take far too long, and probably start crying if I started to thank and recognize my friends and everyone here at Cambridge individually. So seniors, tonight I’m not going to think about how much I will miss all of our shenanigans, like doing door, documenting Benson quotes, and dominating in the CFL. I’m not going to talk about how Cambridge will be a quieter place next year without us. And I’m not going to say that I love y’all dearly.

So, that, not being said, I’m going to start with…

Professor Benson, thank you for being so zealous in your calling. Your energy and passion about every single author we read, even including T.S. Eliot, transfers to us. We come to class excited because you are excited. We work hard because we know the effort and care you put into your work, and we want to match that.

Professor VanOpstal, thank you for your gentle spirit and nature. You are a calming voice of reason and a constant encouragement. Thank you for being steadfast in your convictions and adamant about what is right and what is wrong.

Dr. Howell, thank you for being intuitive and blissfully intolerant of the occasional, or not so occasional, efforts to hoodwink the faculty. You are a not-yet middle-aged man who consistently outsmarts us on pop-culture and academia alike. Thank you for being purposefully unforgiving of efforts that do not measure up, and knowing everything about everything.

And here’s one I had to slip in after Dr. Isbell approved my speech, so get ready, it’s about to be saucy… Dr. Isbell, I would like to personally apologize on behalf of my class for giving you such a hard time. Thank you for being so diligent. Honestly, its like you’ve got eyes on the back of your head. You keep your standards for Cambridge high and work tirelessly so they are met.

Professor Nine, fellow nerd, incredible professor, wonderful listener, and tutorial advisor extraordinaire; thank you for caring so deeply. I thank you for the example you’ve given us of someone who pours her heart into everything she does. You truly stand out in a culture where it is cool not to care.

Professor Rico, Seniorita Gudde, thank you for being so engaging and basically a legend. You somehow manage the amazing balancing act being one of the most fun, as well as most strict teachers at Cambridge. Thank you for expecting so much of us and pushing us to reach our potential.

Lastly, Dr. Wolfe, thank you for being a man of steadfast dedication to our school, but more importantly, a man of uncompromising faith. Thank you for caring more deeply for the Lord than the objects of this world, while also seeking to know the students well on a personal level.

These teachers impacted me significantly, and the characteristic I see among them all is intentionality.

Therefore, students, my charge is that we all embrace the intentionality displayed by our faculty. We should be intentional in our walks with the Lord, intentional in our friendships, intentional in our studies, and intentional on making Cambridge a better place.

Live with conviction, be strong in those convictions, and build your life around those convictions.

Like Professor Benson, I challenge the Cambridge student body to be passionate and driven in your studies, working with all your heart for the Lord (Colossians 3:23).

Like Professor VanOpstal, I challenge the Cambridge student body to follow the call to be clothed in the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit and obey the Lord’s statutes in steadfastness (1 Peter 3:4).

Like Professor Nine, I challenge the Cambridge student body to be the people who care, who outdo each other in honor, who stand out in today’s uncaring culture, and who weep with those who weep and celebrate with those who celebrate (Romans 12:10, 15).

Underclassmen, take good care of Cambridge for me. I love this school, and will miss it dearly. Don’t let the opportunity to learn and grow in this community slip you by. I encourage you with the words of Paul, “Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58).

Seniors, enter the world and take with you the lessons learned at Cambridge. Let the next few years build your character and knowledge upon this solid foundation. Enjoy this next journey. I am so, so excited to join you.