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Saint James School graduates 42

June 02, 2008|By ERIN CUNNINGHAM

ST. JAMES - For their last night on campus, Saint James School's class of 2008 spent time at a teacher's house Saturday before going to Waffle House at midnight.

Maura McCormack, of Hagerstown, said she and her classmates went to the restaurant to talk about moments some of them have shared together for five years.

On Sunday, they shared one last moment together. The 42 members of the graduating class of 2008 received their diplomas during a commencement ceremony at the boarding school's campus.

Maura lived on campus during her last two years at Saint James, and said leaving the school and the friends she learned and lived with left her with mixed emotions.

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"It's a little bit of sadness, but I'm excited," she said.

Maura will attend Providence (R.I.) College in the fall.

Heather Lowery, of Williamsport, received two awards during Sunday's ceremony, including one for being the best all-around athlete. She played volleyball, basketball and softball at Saint James School.

She attended the school for five years, and said she was a day student.

Heather said she'll always remember when she was accepted to Saint James.

"It was such an achievement," she said.

Heather will enroll at the University of Pittsburgh (Pa.) in the fall and said she's planning to study pre-law.

The school's graduation speaker Sunday was Charles E. Cook Jr., the publisher of "The Cook Political Report" and a political analyst for National Journal Group Inc. Cook lives in Chevy Chase, Md., and his son, David Cook, was one of Sunday's graduates.

Cook's youngest son, Jeffrey Cook, also attends the school.

David Cook spent the night at Saint James School during a sixth-grade class trip. After leaving there, he told his family he wanted to enroll.

Cook said his son compared the school to Hogwarts, the school attended by the students in the "Harry Potter" book series.

At the time, Cook questioned sending his son to a boarding school.

"At the time it was ... why would we do that?" Cook said. "Now, it's ... why wouldn't we?"

He said his son and other students have grown and matured during their time at Saint James School, which Cook said is sheltered from some of the realities of the "real world." The students are ready to face that world, though, he said, with what they have learned during their time at Saint James.

Luke Salisbury came to Saint James School in eighth grade and said he's had "a lot of good experiences" at the school. He'll be going to Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass., in a few months, and said he feels prepared for the challenge. Luke plans to study engineering there.

Luke, whose family lives in Middletown, Md., lived on campus for the first time in his senior year, and said it will help him prepare for living away from home in college.

He plans to keep in touch with a fellow graduate, who will be attending college nearby. McCall "Mickey" Breuer, will attend Tufts University in Medford, Mass. She plans to study international relations there.

McCall, whose family is from Middletown, said she was "definitely glad" to be graduating Sunday.

"I really enjoyed my time here, but it's a strict place," she said. "I'm glad to be going to a freer environment."

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