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EHA 2021 Graduation Day at the Academy!

By EHA, 04/08/21, 12:45PM EDT


April 8, 2021, Guilford, Conn., - Graduation season has sprung here at Elite Hockey Academy as we recently celebrated our senior athletes who earned a diploma through the Elite Hockey Academy. Our ceremony saw ten students receive their high school diploma and five more earning postgraduate degrees. 

Throughout high school, you dream about your graduation ceremony. You dream about walking across the stage and receiving that diploma, in our case, we skated to the podium. Then you throw your cap in the air, knowing you have completed this part of your life. Elite Hockey President Peter Alden said that graduation day was a day of celebration. 

“Graduations are special because it's the start of a new era,” said Alden. “To see our student-athletes and how happy they were on that day, it was special. I give a lot of credit to our students for their diligent work in the classroom but also the academic directors Bill Crane and Sheriden Lawley for their commitment and dedication to the student and program. This is a day these guys will never forget for the rest of their lives."

This past year has been unlike any other year we have experienced in our lives. With all of the challenges and chaos of the previous 13 months, Bill Crane, the Director of Academics at the Elite Hockey Academy, said that all students finished on time and received their high school diploma.

“The biggest challenge was the fluidity of each day,” said Crane. “Schedules were constantly in flux, testing and retesting for Covid-19 and the logistics required to meet these objectives, keeping track of the student’s time when they were working outside the classroom, communications, government restrictions… the list goes on and on. Suffice it to say our students prevailed in a year of utter chaos.” 

While our students ultimately prevailed in the face of chaos that was taking place this year. Our students and staff were able to meet in person five days a week along with extra on-ice skills training and strength training throughout each week at the Northford Ice Pavilion in Northford, CT.  Although Connectict faced a two month shutdown from November to January, the Academy took their studies on the road and traveled to Florida for a three week training camp that encompassed two skates per day, off ice training and daily school at the Florida skating rink facilities in Clearwater and West Palm Beach.  "This is part of the benefit of online learning and innovative ways we work with our student-athletes." Added Alden

“At EHA, you hold yourself accountable,” explained Crane. “What this means is that we provide you with the course work and set the quota, or your objective. It is up to you to meet those objectives. If you don’t, there are penalties. If you do meet them, life is good. If you exceed them, you earn more freedoms. EHA treats school like a business: objectives, accountability, quotas, performance. Success leads to understanding and growth.  Many of our students began to communicate like adults. I feel confident saying that this program shows a higher degree of positive change in personal growth, on-ice performance and their academics .”

The seniors at the Elite Hockey Academy finished with an Average of 91.3%. The Elite Hockey Academy Valedictorian this year was Michael Marquez, who earned a 95.42% Average. Our Salutatorian was Grant Ermelini, who finished with a 94.76% Average. All of our students who were on track to graduate received their diplomas, and finished with an Average above 83%. 

“They did this on their own,” Bill said. “They took responsibility for their own work and they got it done!”

“That one can not only prevail, but one can exceed all expectations during the toughest of times if they take responsibility for themselves,” Crane said. “Teamwork is not something that just takes place on the ice, but in the classroom, traveling, helping the community, helping each other, helping the younger team members, and supporting the program.” 

We want to say congratulations to all ten students that earned a diploma from the Elite Hockey Academy. Daniel Burg, Dylan Contreas, Brenden Coon, Cade Corbin, Grant Ermelini, Michael Marquez, Timothy Mattingly, Logan Nickerson, Michael Roby, and Brody Trew all received diplomas from the Elite Hockey Academy. Adam Coley, Wes Coquet, Nick Fall, Nick Junkin, and Luke Stevens earned postgraduate degrees. Congratulations to the EHA Class of 2021!

To learn more about the Academy, please email