Hamden Hall loves its traditions. We’ve been cultivating some of them, such as the Valentine’s Bake Sale, since 1942!
A more recent tradition that has taken hold in our Lower School was established by the Vingiano family nearly a decade ago. The Rose Ceremony was a way to thank then-kindergartner Ava Vingiano’s teachers for the “wonderful job they do,” according to mom Laurie Vingiano.
“Beginning in Kindergarten, our family began a tradition with Ava’s class every year on the last day of school. Our secret tradition only became known during Ava’s sixth-grade graduation,” explained Laurie.
Now a regular part of the Sixth-Grade Commencement Ceremony, each rising Middle Schooler presents a rose to their sixth-grade teachers.
Ava is now a ninth-grader, and the family couldn’t be happier with their choice to enroll their daughter at Hamden Hall. Anthony “Bill” Vingiano says he and his wife sought a diverse school community for their only child that encouraged participation and dedication.
“We wanted a small community that our family could engage in and enjoy from Kindergarten through senior year,” maintained Bill.
And engage they have! Laurie is the current co-chair of the Hamden Hall Parents’ Association. Formerly, she was the chair of the Ways and Means Committee and has been involved with a number of subcommittees and events. She began her volunteer service to the school as a room parent.
Bill, a private investor, has been on the Hamden Hall Board of Trustees for three years. He serves on the board’s Institutional Advancement Committee. In addition, he’s often seen around campus with his trusty camera as the defacto photographer of Ava’s classes.
Both Laurie and Bill cite the fact that with involvement comes the opportunity to be on campus with their daughter and connect with faculty and the community at large.
“We have always been involved with the school,” said Laurie. “I feel a greater connection to the school and my daughter’s experience.”
That experience has been a positive one full of participation, according to the Vingianos. As a Lifer at Hamden Hall, Ava has been on the Hamden Hall stage since Kindergarten including roles in all of the Middle School productions and the Sixth-Grade Musical. She also played soccer, basketball, and lacrosse in her Middle School years.
“One of the things we love about Hamden Hall is participation. At home we advocate participation and dedication,” said Bill.
The Vingianos particularly appreciate the sixth-grade sports requirement, which they say teaches teamwork, discipline, and a willingness to try something new.
The school’s emphasis on the arts – from studio art to choir to acting – is equally noteworthy.
“Getting kids up on stage from a very early age is wonderful for their self-confidence, their ability to think on their feet, and teaching them to be comfortable in front of a crowd,” explained Bill.
As Ava navigates her way through the Upper School, Laurie and Bill are excited for all of the new clubs, teams, and school initiatives that will be afforded her – as they call it, an “added bonus”!
“We wanted Ava to be well prepared for college and we are confident that the education she is receiving at Hamden Hall will give her a seamless transition into her college years,” they said.