Bright, talented, kind, socially aware. We remember when you started preschool. We thought graduating in 2020 sounded so cool, and so far away. Story after story reported your schooling. You were the class of 2020. What would life be like then? What would your graduation hold? So interesting, so exciting. You’ve weathered many storms. Who knew your final challenge would be one of global proportion? Who knew you’d have to give up so much for the greater good? Well, my hat goes off to the graduates of 2020.
I am sorry you missed your prom. I am sorry you’ve missed your spring sports, activities, musicals, concerts, scholar banquets and so much more. I am sorry you will not get to finish your last day in your high school and kick your heels in the air as you walk out. I am sorry you will not publicly be able to receive all the awards and accolades you deserve. No high fives and hugs to celebrate. As a nation we grieve with you.
But hear me out class of 2020, you are exceptional. You have survived so much in this life already. You have managed anxiety, depression, social media, academic stress and more. You have managed the storm of global unrest, political dissension and school shootings. Yet in the midst of such troubling times, you have become people of great determination. Amongst you are students who have started global charities, raised national awareness on pertinent issues and started businesses. I know in this group there are aspiring musicians, amazingly gifted students, strong leaders, exceptional athletes and so much more. You are kind, you are creative, you are talented; and you are just getting started!
So to the class of 2020- hear the nation say- We love you. We are proud of you. We are thankful you have become who you are, and we know the best is yet to come. Keep singing, playing, writing, learning, growing as this is not the end but rather just the beginning. There are endless opportunities for you and may you have the courage to embark on them. Most of all, may you take your strength, resiliency, and passion into a world that desperately needs you. Be proud of who you are and all you’ve done. Know that through your losses, you have played a valuable role in beating this pandemic. Believe you are a difference maker – because you are!
Please send this to the graduate you know and love and add their picture if you want!