Commencement

We look forward to welcoming you to Cushing's 145th Commencement, which culminates with the Graduation Exercises on Saturday, May 23, 2020.

For early planning, here is a summary of information about the weekend. Watch this page and the Parent Scoop for additional details.

Seating and Invitations
There is ample, unreserved seating at Graduation for all guests, with no tickets required and no limit per family.  
 
In addition, each senior will be allotted two seats in a special reserved front section. Parents will receive an invitation from the Academy following Spring Break, and the location of the family's two reserved seats will be included with the invitation.
 
Additional invitations for students to send to family and friends will be available after Spring Break in the Head of School's office.

Location 
Both the Graduation Exercises and the Awards Ceremony will be held under a spacious tent on Adams Field. Graduates and their guests are encouraged to wear flat-soled shoes and to be prepared for variable weather.     
 
Accessibility
Shuttles and golf carts will be operating throughout campus at Graduation to assist you. Please let a driver or a staff member know if you need assistance. For all accessibility and mobility needs, including parking and seating, please contact Mrs. Colleen Fay in the Head of School's office at 978-827-7102 or cfay@cushing.org.
 
Photography
Professional photographers will take photos of each graduate receiving their diploma and those graduates receiving awards during the ceremony. You will receive proofs from Photo-Chambers following Graduation and may order at that time. We encourage you to use this service.
 
If you choose to take any personal photos, we ask that you return to your seat as quickly as possible so that sightlines are not obstructed, for the benefit of all guests and for those watching via live-stream. Photographs taken by our staff during Commencement weekend and at all year-end events will be available online in our photo gallery.

Friday, May 22
  • 3:30 pm: Awards Ceremony. Most department and academic awards—excluding valedictorian, salutatorian, and a few community and academic awards—will be presented at this afternoon ceremony. All parents and guests are welcome to attend. If your son or daughter will be receiving an award, you will be notified in advance by the Academic Office. There is ample seating for all guests, with no tickets required. If you are unable to attend, you may join us via live webcast: cushing.org/live

  • 6:00 - 7:30 pm: Graduation Dinner for the Class of 2020 and their parents

  • Friday night: Boarding seniors/PGs may leave with their families for dinner off-campus, following check-out procedures, but please note that they are required to stay on campus overnight for their final night at Cushing.  
 
Saturday, May 23 
  • 9:00 - 10:30 am: Breakfast:  All guests are welcome to enjoy breakfast in the Fisher-Watkins Dining Commons.

  • 10:15 am: Senior Class Exercises. This is a brief gathering, with remarks made by selected representatives of the Class of 2020. Parents and guests are welcome.

  • 11:00 am: Graduation Exercises. A live webcast will be available.

  • Luncheon: All guests are welcome to enjoy lunch in the Fisher-Watkins Dining Commons.

  • Departure from Campus. Seniors and their families depart campus following the luncheon (no later than 4 pm).
Important Details
  • Caps, tassels, gowns, and stoles are provided to our graduates. Graduates may keep their caps, tassels, and stoles. Gowns are to be returned immediately after the ceremony.

  • If you have any questions, please contact Mrs. Colleen Fay, Administrative Assistant to the Head of School, at 978-827-7102 or cfay@cushing.org, including regarding assistance with mobility needs.
* For the safety and comfort of all of our guests, please be aware that only service animals are permitted on campus.

* Please note that Cushing Academy is a non-smoking campus.

Places to Stay

Hotels in Ashburnham

The Maguire House
Bed and Breakfast
30 Cobb Road
Ashburnham, MA 01430
978.827.5053
Email:maguirehouse@earthlink.net
 
MainFare Bed & Breakfast
82 Main Street
Ashburnham, MA 01430
978.827.6005
Email: mainfarebnb@yahoo.com

Hotels in surrounding towns


625 Betty Spring Road
Gardner, MA 01440
978.630.2500
Owned and operated by Nicole Xarras Moorshead, Cushing class of 1989. Inquire about the Cushing Academy rate for Sunday - Thursday nights.

99 Erdman Way
Leominster, MA 01453
800.325.3535
*A limited number of rooms have been set aside for Friday (5/22/20) at a discounted rate. The discounted rate is only available until April 7, and if the block fills prior to that date the rate is not guaranteed. Reservations can be made by calling the Hotel (978) 534-9000 and mentioning the Cushing Academy Graduation Block.  

Great Wolf Lodge
150 Great Wolf Drive
Fitchburg, MA 01420
978.343.9653
*Please note: Due to an update in the hotel's street address, some GPS devices do not currently provide accurate directions. If you are experiencing difficulties, please use the following: 150 Royal Plaza Dr., Fitchburg, MA 01420.


Inns and B&Bs in surrounding towns


Clamber Hill Inn
111 N. Main Street
Petersham, MA 01366
978.724.8800
Email: relax@clamberhill.com

Howarth House Bed and Breakfast
81 Ross Street
Fitchburg, MA 01420
978.342.2851

Monadnock Inn
379 Main Street
Jaffrey, NH 03452
603.532.7800
info@monadnockinn.com
(For mid-week stays, please ask for the Cushing Academy rate.)
 

Cushing Academy

39 School Street
Ashburnham, Massachusetts 01430
978-827-7000
admissions@cushing.org

Cushing Academy

Cushing Academy exists for students and develops curious, creative, and confident learners and leaders. Founded in 1865, Cushing is a co-ed, college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 and PG. Our students, who come from over 30 states and 30 countries, excel in our outstanding academic, art, and athletic offerings. We welcome you to visit our community and beautiful 162-acre campus in Ashburnham, Mass., just one hour from Boston, to experience all that Cushing has to offer.

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