Bethesda Academy Honors Class of 2020 with Outdoor Graduation Ceremony

Staff Report

Tuesday, June 30th, 2020

Bethesda Academy hosted an outdoor graduation ceremony to celebrate the school’s 16 graduating seniors. In adherence with social distancing guidelines, Bethesda provided tents for each graduate and his family, strategically placed six feet apart in a “U” formation surrounding a stage and podium in the middle of their historic campus.  

The President of Bethesda Academy, Dr. Michael Hughes, led the ceremony. Dr. Hughes is a graduate of The United States Military Academy at West Point, NY, where he held various academic and leadership positions. He later earned graduate degrees from the University of Virginia, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and the United States Army War College. He has also served as headmaster in several positions across the U.S. 

“We’re excited to be able to give these astounding young men a proper send-off,” said Dr. Hughes. “This graduation will undeniably look different than it has in years past, but we are determined to make the day special and honor our graduates.” 

Jaden Wright was named the 2020 Valedictorian, and Malachi Slusher the 2020 Salutatorian. Wright has accepted a football scholarship to Presbyterian College in Clinton, S.C., and Slusher will be enrolled at the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega, Ga. 

Members of the 2020 graduating class were accepted to and are considering a number of higher education institutions including The Citadel, Mercer University, Oregon state, the University of Alabama, Georgia State University, Georgia Southern University and Savannah State University. One young man has enlisted in the U.S. Army. 

Before the ceremony, the graduates also participated in the Bethesda Academy tradition of a Reflection Walk, by touring campus together and revisiting the experiences they shared throughout their education at the leadership academy.