Graduation returns to pre-pandemic normalcy

Layla Mohamed, staff writer

South’s graduation ceremony for the class of 2022 is set to be fully back to its pre-pandemic standards for the first time after two years, Interim Principal Dr. Rosanne Willamson said.

A traditional graduation after a difficult era of [Covid-19] is something that has been long awaited, Williamson explained.

“It’s refreshing that we can return to a more normal [graduation] experience,” Williamson said. “Hopefully, [cases] will continue to be at a level where we can return to normal because it’s been a very long [time of isolation].”

Unlike previous years of Covid-19- in 2020 where there was a socially distanced drive-through graduation and a safely split class ceremony in 2021-this year will consist of the entire class all together in the Rosemont Theater on June 5, Julie Smith, Senior Class Board Sponsor, said.

“[The focus this year] is making sure that students feel safe and supported and [that] we are able to have the whole class together,” Smith said. “Everything else is really status quo from what we’ve done pre-pandemic.”

In contrast, 2021 alum Catherine Monckton said their perspective of graduation had changed from their freshman year to senior year due to the pandemic’s presence.

“I was worried if I’d get a graduation at all,” Monckton said. “I didn’t realize how important it was to me until I realized there was a distinct possibility I could not have one at all, which was kind of terrifying.”

Senior Nicole John said that even though this year’s standard graduation was a surprise, she also envisioned it.

“I was prepared for all this, so [even though] this is a good surprise, [it does not feel like] much of a surprise,” John said. “[But it is] a good thing we’re actually [having a ceremony].”