Congratulations, Class of 2020

We're celebrating your achievements even if we can't hug you
Star Herald Editorial

In this week’s Star Herald we proudly present the Class of 2020 Graduation Edition that features high school seniors from the four schools in the Star Herald coverage area.

It’s no small feat to collect nearly 200 student photos and information in a normal school year, but during distance learning — when seniors aren’t gathered in common spaces at regular times — it was challenging at best.

But it’s a worthwhile venture with a noble end result: to recognize the students for their 13 years of learning and work toward independence and adulthood. And, to put names and faces in the paper of the students who missed out on other opportunities to be in the Star Herald this spring.

They would have filled our pages with photos and coverage of prom, sports, spring concerts and other events and activities that normally make the news.

We hope our readers take a look at the portraits of the Class of 2020 and read about tomorrow’s workers, leaders, entrepreneurs and philanthropists.

We also hope our readers note the graduation ceremonies — mostly online and mostly with social distance – an occasion typically marked by hugs, both congratulatory and farewell.

And, we hope the community gets online to observe these commencements, if nothing else but to hear the parting words from school administration and from the students.

We reached out to speechwriters in Luverne’s senior class for a preview of their messages that will be shared in Sunday’s online ceremony. Alexa Chesley and Gunnar Oldre will team up for one message, and Jordan Winter and Claire Baustian will share another.

“As a class we have seen our fair share of ups and downs and we will always be known as the Corona class,” Chesley and Oldre shared in their preview.

“But this experience has simply highlighted how resilient we are and that with all we learned and accomplished at LHS, we will move past and always remember our unique senior year.”

Winter and Baustian will speak about the support they’ve had through the years.

“We are extremely lucky to live in this community. Not all communities boast excellent high school educations like that which we have received, and understanding this is very humbling,” they wrote.

“There are a lot of factors that contribute to what we have been doing for the past thirteen years, specifically the support of people we see every day: the school staff in the classrooms, hallways, buses, and playgrounds; local businesses and community members who readily support our activities in so many ways; our families who have always been with us through thick and thin; and last but not least, each other. Nothing has highlighted the importance of these relationships like our current situation.”

The LHS commencement will be available on YouTube starting at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 24. A parade of graduates and their parents through town will begin at 4 p.m. (see the related story).

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