Headshots of 3 female and 3 male 20202 college graduates

Dear PWCS Class of 2020,

We were in your shoes just four years ago, celebrating our high school graduations with our family, friends, and school communities. Our accomplishments, hard work, and perseverance were widely praised.

Your senior year of high school did not end traditionally. No one expected March 13 to be the last day you would walk down the halls of your school, the last day to say goodbye to friends you may have known since kindergarten, or the last day to say thank you to teachers who helped you become the young adults you are today.

There is a certain kind of disappointment and sadness when we look at all of the graduates who came before us. We see all the traditions they were able to experience and the important goodbyes that they had time to say, and wonder why us?

Well, the Class of 2020 was never a class of followers; we were always meant to lead the pack.

We are one of the most resilient classes of graduates. Despite our own disappointment, we found ways to spread messages of hope. We gave back to our communities in a time of need. We probably checked in on our friends and family more so than the graduating classes that came before us. After shedding a few selfish tears, we realized that our graduation became so much more. The unprecedented circumstances for both of our graduating classes led to the creation of a special bond between us.

The last months of our studies and training were not easy, but through it all; we never gave up. The diploma we receive whether on a stage, by mail, or through a carpool line, can never be taken back. We earned it. We overcame adversity and we had to dig deep to find confidence in ourselves when it seemed like nothing was going right. This experience provided us a very important life-lesson. We've learned to never take routine for granted and expect tradition because things can change overnight.

We didn't get the ending that we thought we would, but we still crossed the finish line. We are headed into a world that is forever changed by a new normal, but we're ready to face it and leave it a better place than we found it. That was always part of our story. We just happened to take the road less traveled.

We have many good times ahead to look forward to. We have cheerful hellos that are going to be said again. We have incredible goals in our futures that we haven't even started pursuing. And most importantly, there will be many more accomplishments to celebrate.

We are the resilient Class of 2020. Congratulations fellow graduates!


Representatives from Prince William County School's Class of 2016;

Jon Adrian - Potomac High School '16 and University of William and Mary '20
Afnan Ali - Woodbridge High School '16 and George Mason University '20
Sonali Dixit - Osbourn Park High School '16 and Virginia Commonwealth University '20
Brooke Duckworth - C.D. Hylton High School '16 and United States Air Force Academy '20
Kelechi Nwanevu - Forest Park High School and The Governor's School @ Innovation Park '16 and University of Virginia '20
Kacey Ruben - C.D. Hylton High School '16 and High Point University '20