First of all, happy graduation! You should be so proud of yourself for reaching this milestone in your life. It took a lot of effort, hard work, and passion to accomplish this. Everything you have done, every hour spent in the library, every project submitted, every exam taken, it all sums up to this: college graduation. What a surreal feeling!
I simply cannot believe the past four years have flown by the way they have - it feels like just yesterday I was a freshman moving into my first home away from home with my first roommate. I remember feeling terrified, and anxious as can be. I now leave college a strong, confident young woman who's ready to take on the world. In the words of Kenny Chesney, I don't know where the time goes, but it sure goes fast.
Class of 2020, it breaks my heart that we are unable to properly celebrate with one another. My stomach drops when I think about all the activities we would've been partaking in the past few weeks, from the senior bar crawl, to senior week activities, to walking across that stage and accepting my diploma. I get goosebumps thinking about that rush of emotion I was sure to feel in that moment on graduation day, that overwhelming sense of pride and excitement and completeness. We all deserve to feel that, and although we may not have the physical sense of completeness, it is crucial to take a break and reflect on all you have accomplished. You deserve this and so much more!
Celebrate! Grab a beer, take pictures, spam your social media, eat tons of food...do it all. Even if it's just with your best friends and family in your backyard, you deserve a celebration. There are so many people that are immensely proud of you for accomplishing this feat, and although they may not all be physically present to tell you that, know with a certainty that they are. Your professors, your coaches, your advisors, your classmates, your friends, your family...they're all so proud of you.
Hopefully in the future we will be able to celebrate in ceremony, uniting with everyone who made the past four years so special, one last time. Until then, my fellow graduates, I salute you. You did it - you graduated from college. In the middle of a pandemic, at that! I encourage you to carry yourself with a new air of confidence; you now have a degree under your belt. Go forth and set the world on fire! *Cue "Savage Remix" by Megan Thee Stallion and Beyonce*.