By Sarah Shurge – As the school year comes to an end, it’s an exciting time for seniors with prom, graduation, summer, and then the start of their next adventure, college.
“Honestly, it feels amazing,” said Madison Tate-Rankin, WMHS senior. “It’s nice to have a break. I’ve been doing AP classes, so it’ll be nice to chill before going to college and starting all over again.”
Everyone imagines what their senior year and high school graduation would look like. But it’s hard to imagine what that would look like during a pandemic.
This year looked a little different at Wayne Memorial High School.
Wayne Memorial was doing virtual classes until March 1st. Then the school switched to two hybrid groups, group A and group B. Group A does in-person classes on Monday and Tuesday. Group B does in-person classes on Thursday and Friday. Wednesday is full remote for the entire school.
“The past year has been more challenging than other years with the online classes but it really helped me learn self-motivation and self-dedication that I can apply to future classes,” said Morgan Butler, WMHS senior.
This year looked different for the valedictorians and salutatorians as well. They are all girls.
The class of 2021 valedictorians and salutatorians are: Mirian Mendoza, Madison Tate-Rankin, Khushi Patel, Victoria Ceci, Sydney Sharon, Morgan Butler, and Eliszabeth Davis.
“We are very proud of these young ladies. They persevered in their classes and were also our school leaders. These young women were diligent in their studies, helped plan and execute several school-wide events throughout their time here at WMHS, and were always willing to lend a helping hand,” said WMHS Assistant Principal, Stacie Bukosky.
“Girl power,” the group of seven girls in their caps and gowns cheered together.
“We’ve seen a trend of girls in AP classes, so to see this didn’t seem as surprising as you would think. For us, it’s the new normal,” said Butler.
On June 1st at 8AM, WMHS seniors reported to the Alumni Area to take another step closer to the graduation finish line. It was time to pick up their cap and gowns.
The seniors lined up at the gym door closest to the baseball field, walked through the gym to grab their cap and gown, senior t-shirt, and class of 2021 lawn sign, and exited through the door closest to the tennis court.
“This was easily the hardest year of my life. It was my most rigorous class schedule. So many times I wanted to give up so bad. But I didn’t and I ended with a 4.8,” said Sydney Sharon, WMHS senior.
Senior year can be challenging for students in general, but especially during a pandemic with online classes.
“I had a lot of people helping me: my friends, my family, my teachers, my coach. Swimming helped. It was something steady, so for two hours of practice you didn’t have to worry about the chaos or anything else,” said Mirian Mendoza, WMHS senior.
WMHS 2021 graduation will be on June 3rd in the Wayne Memorial High School Alumni Arena.
“We will miss them dearly. We wish them the best in their future endeavors,” said WMHS Assistant Principal, Bukosky.