While few people ever forget their high school graduation, the seniors comprising the Class of 2020 should have no trouble recalling the series of events befalling their unorthodox exit from secondary school. Schools across the nation remain closed for fear of COVID-19, leaving many hopeful seniors wondering what will become of their commencement ceremonies. Summing up the common sentiment in concise commentary, one local senior remarked to me, “This stinks.”

Although frustration is rampant throughout the Class of 2020, communities are rallying behind their seniors. In StickerTalk’s hometown of Buna, Texas, school staff and community members joined together to line the streets with oversize yard signs honoring each and every graduate from Buna High School. In neighboring towns, friends and family of seniors have organized parades for their senior class. Social media has offered additional support for local graduates with a multitude of Facebook users offering to “adopt” a senior.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel, however, for seniors graduating from Texas high schools. With the recent approval of outdoor graduation ceremonies from Governor Greg Abbot, many seniors and their families are optimistic that the long-awaited graduation day may not be so far away after all. While communities stand by for further decisions from their school boards, seniors continue to receive a generous outpouring of local support, helping ease the anxiety of uncertainty.

We hope that the Class of 2020 will find encouragement in the caring concern of their communities while continuing to pursue their dreams, even in the face of a pandemic. In the somewhat humorous words of composer Lin-Manuel Miranda, “My dear, terrified graduates, you are about to enter the most uncertain and thrilling period of your lives. The stories you are about to live are the ones you will be telling your children, and grandchildren, and therapists.”

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