Written by Sam Wang '23
A new school year could not properly start without Flag Raising at Germantown Academy. Even back in the depths of the Pandemic, a virtual Flag Raising initiated the school year of 2020-21 and connected all of us online as it always had in person. This year, we were fortunate to unite in Connor Quad. A torrential rain the day before could not stop us, only making the grass greener and the air crisper.
Flag Raising not only celebrates the rich history of GA but also cherishes the fond memories of our growth. By now, I have almost memorized every passage of the re-tellings of GA history: from the Belfry that bears witness to the Battle of Germantown to the formation of Belfry Club, the oldest high school drama club in the country. Each Flag Raising also reminds us of our growth. By simply looking at each row of students, I could see younger versions of me amongst the lower classmen. Our growth has been tremendous, all thanks to our teachers who held our hands in Lower School, guided us in Middle School, and encouraged our independence in Upper School. I am especially grateful for their care, which undoubtedly made me who I am today.
Flag Raising renews our hope for the future and is a call for action to make GA an even better place. Each year, we welcome new faculty and students to GA at Flag Raising. The community gives them a new home, and each of them brings fresh ideas in return. Furthermore, Flag Raising brings our community together, both starting and strengthening bonds. At the end of Flag Raising, the GA Civility Pledge summarized our spirit well: “We are kind, respectful, courteous, and inclusive and we honor difference.” That’s how we make GA better.
Seeing the joy and confidence on everybody’s face gave me a much-needed sense of normalcy after all the challenges in the last two years. We have overcome so many obstacles, helping each other along the way. I am so proud to be part of this new chapter of GA history, and I am confident that we can make tomorrow even better for the next generation of GA Patriots.