Based on nominations from our faculty and staff, a group of former Carpe Diem Award winners selected English Teacher and Department Chair Martha Fortier as the Carpe Diem recipient for 2018. With Martha's husband Paul and daughters Meg '12 and Emma '14 there to join the celebration, Head of School Trey Cassidy announced Martha's award at the all-school closing assembly on May 29th. In front of all her students and colleagues, he shared many quotations from the nomination papers, and four of Martha's students entertained the audience with recitations of their pastiche projects which, they explained, were written in a style that imitated Herman Melville's Moby-Dick.
The standing ovation Martha received spoke to the respect and love this passionate educator inspires in others, as did the remarks from her colleagues:
- “She sets high standards and then provides her students with the concrete tools they need to meet them, empowering them to take risks, stretch their skills, and grow as readers and writers.”
- “So many of us are better at what we do because she teaches at this school. I watch her, learn from her, and am grateful to have her as a friend and mentor in our community.”
- “Her work has strengthened our community – where would our School be without Unleashed, the Bancroft Young Writers Conference, the Poetry Expo, or the variety of interesting English electives?”
- “There is an undeniable pride that I hear in students’ voices when they say ‘Mrs. Fortier is a really hard grader.’ They never say this as a complaint; instead, they wear it like a badge of honor.”
Congratulations, Mrs. Fortier; you are truly one who seizes the day in your work and attitude.