VIDEO: International Students Present Their Flags During Florida Preparatory Academy Ceremony

By  //  February 17, 2017

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will be displayed in Florida Prep 'Hall of Flags'

WATCH LIVE: Each year boys and girls from countries new to Florida Prep present their nation’s flag to join those of students from other nations currently displayed in the iconic “Hall of Flags.”

BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – Florida Preparatory Academy (Florida Prep), the Melbourne based boarding and day school for boys and girls in 5th through 12th grade, has a long-standing tradition you will not see in any other school in the county.

Each year boys and girls from countries new to the Academy present their nation’s flag to join those of students from other nations currently displayed in the iconic “Hall of Flags.”

This year’s New Flag Presentation is set for Friday, February 17 at the academy, located at 1950 Academy Drive in Melbourne.

As traditions go, the presentation is loved by students and their parents alike.

It’s often the case that students touring Florida Prep during the admissions process will remark that their country’s flag is not displayed, and when told the story of the new flag presentation they immediately indicate it’s time for their country to participate.

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Many families donate their own flag to the school, leaving a lasting impression well after their student graduates. In past years students have also requested permission to wait until their senior year to “hang their flag,” as a fond farewell to the school.

Sam Breckinridge with the Cambodian flag. Each year boys and girls from countries new to Florida Prep present their nation’s flag to join those of students from other nations currently displayed in the iconic “Hall of Flags.”

Over the years, the ceremony has reflected the changing student population at Florida Prep.

In Florida Prep’s (then Florida Air Academy) early days many of the flags came from European nations, the children of scientists arriving in the United States to join the space program at nearby Kennedy Space Center.

They were soon joined by the flags of the Caribbean nations, including the Bahamas, Jamaica and Virgin Islands.

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As Asia became more open, and the interest in an American high school education grew, China, Korea and Japan joined the roster, alongside exotic locations such as Fiji and New Zealand.

In recent years, flags from the former Soviet Bloc countries have appeared, joined of late by those from smaller African nations.

Indeed, such is the melting-pot of Florida Prep that despite the 85 flags currently displayed in the Hall of Flags, students from eight more countries will walk before their fellow students this year to present their flag to Florida Prep’s President, James Dwight.

New flags to be presented include Australia, Estonia, Guyana, Haiti, Republic of Georgia, Montenegro, Senegal and Togo.

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“The Hall of Flags is the heart of our campus,” said Dwight.

“It’s therefore very fitting that it represents so many past and current students. Our diversity is something of which we are very proud. We currently have students from over 30 nations living on campus and it’s a fantastic opportunity for our students to broaden their own world and to experience life through the eyes of another nation. Students leave Florida Prep as citizens of the world, ready to tackle globalization regardless of the career path they may choose, and many also establish world-wide friendships that will last a lifetime.”

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Each year boys and girls from countries new to Florida Prep present their nation’s flag to join those of students from other nations currently displayed in the iconic “Hall of Flags.” Above, Maria Gumeniuk of Serbia with her country’s flag.

Each year boys and girls from countries new to Florida Prep present their nation’s flag to join those of students from other nations currently displayed in the iconic “Hall of Flags.” Above, left to right, are Ester Burda of Fiji, Abdalhameed Alderawi of Palestine and Elvis Rwagasana of Rwanda.


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