Dear Class of 2020,
Where do I begin? For many of us, this last term has been a whirlwind of emotions. None of us expected this pandemic to affect us as much as it has. We’ve been stripped of proms, graduations, and goodbyes. As a current high school senior, my academic year is coming to a close.
This bittersweet end leaves me feeling sour. Sour that such a long-awaited moment in my academic career did not go as planned. Sour that I will not be able to hug my friend’s goodbye, many of whom are international students, so I might not be able to see them for a while. Sour that I was robbed of creating some of my best memories on campus. Sour that I was unable to thank the staff and faculty that have helped me grow into the young woman that I am today.
As I finish some of my classes and part ways with other students, I feel myself feeling conflicted. I am excited to near an end to this long chapter, but I am also remorseful that I had to end it through zoom. As I end this chapter, I look upon starting the next one: college. In doing so, I feel myself drowning in uncertainty. Uncertain that it will be either scheduled online, like my last term senior year or even canceled. I am also thinking about college graduates: those who are scared about their careers with the current economic state. I know that many of us might be feeling a similar way. We might be feeling upset, scared, or even angry. I empathize with every one of you as these sentiments is valid.
However, we must recognize that by canceling school and staying home, we are paying a service to our friends, families, essential workers, and those who are at high risk to COVID-19. With every canceled prom, commencement, and activity, we are ensuring that we keep others safe. This might cause some pain and hurt, but at least it shared globally with the graduating class of 2020.
Our class is strong, resilient, and persistent. So here’s to those who are first-generation graduates, who have overcome barriers (irrespective of size), who have worked hard towards their diploma. Here’s to those of you who have made it… we see you!
Here’s to us!