Kirsten Smith, Century High School
As majority of this year's graduating class, I've been in high school for the past 4 years, and those were some 4 very long years! If it wasn't for my wonderful teachers as well as the staff from the SLC I wouldn't be in the class of 2020. I've had some hard times during high school but the support I've received from teachers like Mr. Ross, Mr. Meeuwsen, Mrs. Laack, and Miss Anne (and of course many others,) made me feel less alone. Century has taught me many things but it most of all taught me I was important, as well as the quadratic formula, (thanks Mr. Thomas). I'm proud to say I'm a 2020 graduate from Century High School!~ Kirsten Smith
Katarina Mapanao, Hilhi
“Stay healthy! I’ll see you all next month.”
I paused for a second.
When the fourth-period bell rang, I was met with a harsh realization. As much as I tried to stay optimistic, I knew that April was only an estimate.
It was a moment that many students had been dreaming and hoping for.
The thought of an extended Spring Break felt like a surprise reward, but I had a strange feeling that we may not be able to safely return to school next month.
On April 8, my suspicions were confirmed.
Governor Kate Brown announced the closure of Oregon public schools for the rest of the school year, and I couldn’t help but think about all the moments that my other classmates and I would lose out on.
We were unlike any other Hilhi graduating class.
No prom, no spring sports, no May Fete…
No more time to say our final goodbyes to each other.
It’s unbelievable to think that next Tuesday — June 2nd — we’ll be graduating separately. It’s even more unbelievable to think that — on June 3rd — I’ll no longer be a Hilhi student, but a Hilhi alumna.
Although the COVID-19 Pandemic has cut our senior year short and stolen (what would’ve been) our most memorable moments from us, I know that this isn’t the end.
Yes, the Class of 2020 is unlike other graduating classes. But how many people can say that they graduated amidst a pandemic?
Graduating high school is one of the many amazing milestones that we were able to accomplish together; I am certain that we will all go on to accomplish the most wondrous things at the most spectacular places.
To all the teachers who have supported me from Day 1, all the friends I’ve made throughout high school, and my parents who have always believed in me…
Wherever life may bring me, I will always look back on my time at Hilhi with a smile.
Taylor Connor, Century
Although the year ended on a short note I do appreciate all the time and effort I put in to it. I only went to Century for 2 years but still I loved every part of it. Although I wish we had prom I do like the time I spent especially in my art classes.
Rebekka Sliwinski, Liberty
Liberty was the best thing I could have asked for. You never believe people when they say "it goes by fast" but it really does, it goes by so fast, so it's sad that it ended early, but it just goes to show that anything can happen. I remember my first day walking in the doors of Liberty and feeling so nervous and I remember my last day walking though those doors. It felt like my second home. I wish we could all go back for one last official day, but we have to take what we can get. Liberty was everything I ever wanted out of high school and I'm so thankful for every experience I had while being there.
Jadan Edmunds, Liberty
It was a shock. We were once at school and now here we are. Stuck at home while we once were worried about graduating and parties and now worrying about the safety of our fellow members and neighbors for all of our well beings. I am glad that we are taking a safer route and putting health before fun things. It is just so odd that we aren't going to enjoy all of the traditional customs the way it supposed to be. But we are still getting the support that we need as well for the people that need to make up work. Even though I am a little upset about what has happened. I am glad that we are still able to do something for our graduation. Hopefully everyone hasn't had too hard of a time like I did.
Ryan Smith, Glencoe
The past few weeks have been tough for the class of 2020. Isolated from each other, our teachers, and the normal excitement and bustle of school, we’ve watched in dismay as our senior traditions slip away. The roaring crowds and tearful celebration of graduation look likely to be replaced by a video; our senior prom, one of high school’s most iconic experiences, will almost certainly be canceled. And what makes this situation especially heartbreaking is that we never really had a chance to say goodbye. When we left school on March 13th, none of us thought to take one last look around or to have one final conversation with the teachers, friends, and classmates we’ve known for years. As we stepped off of campus for an extended Spring Break, we didn’t realize that we were actually walking out of high school for the last time in our lives.
The loss of so much from our senior year is undeniably tragic. But, as I grieve what we have lost, I also can’t help but notice all the ways that people in my class have been giving back—to our schools, to our community, and to each other. I’ve seen people reach out, if only virtually, to check on and support friends and classmates. I’ve watched seniors spearhead responses to the pandemic as part of student government and other clubs and activities, energetically brainstorming ways to support our schools and preserve our class’s legacy. I’ve laughed with friends as we gather to celebrate virtual birthdays, and I’ve scrolled through Instagram and smiled as seniors trade positivity and warmth through our posts and comments. As members of my class go our separate ways this summer, we won’t forget the final few months of our senior year. We’ll remember the laughter and the tears, the loneliness and the camaraderie, the anguish and the hope. And most of all, we’ll remember how, in an ironic twist of fate, what has so violently driven us apart has also brought all of us together.
More Reflections Soon!
More Reflections Soon!