Columbus Academy will graduate its 99th class beginning at 9 a.m. Friday, June 8, at Academy's Senior Quad at the school, 4300 Cherry Bottom Road.

Columbus Academy will graduate its 99th class beginning at 9 a.m. Friday, June 8, at Academy's Senior Quad at the school, 4300 Cherry Bottom Road.

Headmaster John Mackenzie said 87 seniors in the class of 2012 represent scholars, athletes, actors, musicians, dancers and many others.

They will attend 55 different colleges and universities in 22 states and one foreign country.

"This class has done an impressive job of leading the school, not only through their service in elected positions but also by setting a positive example to our younger grades by their words and actions," Mackenzie said.

"Considering that those seniors who entered Columbus Academy at an early age were in second grade at the time of the 9/11 attacks, this is a class that has witnessed many changes in the world outside and in the school."

The fall of their senior year witnessed the final events celebrating Columbus Academy's centennial.

Senior class president Alex Farrenkopf of Gahanna said the class of 2012 is special.

"A lot of us have been here 14 years," he said. "When looking at the time and the accomplishments, we think of our time as special. We can look at the senior trip and prom as a few times when you look around and you're happy about every person around you."

The group traveled to Chicago for its senior trip in March.

"Having grown up together, I think we reached a level of maturity that we knew it was time to hold on to each other. It was the idea we knew we didn't have that much time left," Farrenkopf said. "It has been a moving thing getting close to everyone."

Farrenkopf said the class has a lot of individual state champions, and the list of colleges the seniors will attend is "really cool."

Farrenkopf will open the commencement ceremony with a welcome address. Also speaking will be the school's recipient of the Andrew William Cary Cup, who will be announced with other award winners during Academy's Honors Assembly on June 6.

Michael Alexander, president of Lasell College in Massachusetts, will serve as commencement speaker 43 years after delivering the first valedictory speech at Academy's new campus in 1969.

During his years at Columbus Academy, Alexander was the school's star quarterback. He also developed a love of animals and worked closely with his father, a former keeper at the Columbus Zoo.

After graduating as valedictorian from Columbus Academy in 1969, Alexander earned his bachelor's degree in history and literature from Harvard University and his master's in education from Ohio State University and completed the coursework toward his doctorate at the Harvard School of Education.

He also married Mary Barbara on Academy's Cherry Bottom Road campus in 1971 and went on to successful corporate careers in media, entertainment and technology.

Earning diplomas from Columbus Academy's class of 2012 will be 10 students from Blacklick. They are Meredith McCloud, Carlton Morris, Morgan Ransom, Zachary Ratcliff, Kristin Schultz, Michael Sheu, Spencer Smith, Sydney Smith, Danika Stahl and RJ Watters.

Twenty students from Gahanna will graduate: Christian Amland, John Bacon, Farrenkopf, James Frye, Alisha Ho, Daniel Leathery, Annie Lee, Clarissa Leickly, Christin Meiburg, Zachary Mercer, Mark Morford, Lauren Rials, Matthew Rials, Roshun Sankaran, Erin Simmons, Ryan Vale, Tyler Walker-Terry, William Westwater, Conrad Wuorinen and Brook Zhang.

Other graduates listed by their hometown are as follows:

* Bexley: Jacob A. Mikalov and Anastasia Tylka.

* Columbus: Rebecca Beitzinger, Nathanial Brown, Allyson Dang, Sarah Kerr, Emma Lasky and Maher Latif.

* Dublin: Elbert Foo, Langston Hughes, Stephan Kim, Vasudha Sadana, Rachel Viets, Ivy Zhang and Randy Zhao.

* Galena: Drew Klopfer and Isaac Mallory.

* Granville: Emily Robinson.

* Lewis Center: Lauren Burke.

* London: Rachel Terveer.

* New Albany:Ryan Anzalone, Caroline Beaulieu, Elizabeth Benson, Faith Christiansen, Daniela de Aguair, Timothy Eldridge, Denny Gao, Jon Michael Hilsheimer, Sydney Mogul, Christopher Perrini, Ryan Rothstein,Matthew Tamarkin, Matthew Turney and Jake Wilson.

* Pataskala: Mallory Grayson.

* Pickerington: LaShaun Ransom.

* Powell: Katherine Maratea and Sandhya Ramaswamy.

* South Solon: Jesse Van Genugten and Ruben Van Genugten.

* Upper Arlington: Benjamin Bechtel, Stephen Casey and Emily Daoud.

* Westerville: Jillian Adler, Logan Berlet, Alexander Cea, Camilla, Mampieri, Allison Martin, Maggie McGuire, Tolu Obikunle, Dina Sinno, Jacqueline Spence, Brooke Theis and Sarah Wilson.

* Worthington: Kristin Lampe, Flannery Maney and Christopher Robie.