Graduating from high school is the pinnacle of success for young people. The spring of senior year is filled with promise as young adults prepare to cross the stage in front of their peers to receive their diploma and begin their journey into the “real world.” For the class of 2020, who spent the last two months of their high school careers in virtual learning settings, the traditional ceremonies and accompanying celebrations have been postponed and reimagined in the face of the COVID-19 quarantine.
One senior from the Out-of-Door Academy has found a creative way to channel that energy, giving a voice to the class of 2020. Hannah Greenblott (’20) worked with seniors from across the country to provide a message of hope to all students facing this unexpected and challenging end to their high school careers.
“When I came to the realization that senior year would be over, I wanted to have some sort of impact,” Hannah explains. “I was very upset, just like the rest of us, but it only takes one person to be positive about the entire situation to create a ripple effect. I figured I could be that person.”
She wanted to encapsulate the experience and provide an impactful message to unify the collective class of 2020. She created an Instagram page to connect fellow freshman attending The University of Tampa in the fall. As her following grew, the group discussed the hardships they were facing and Hannah decided to take action.
After countless days and hours, a video message began to take shape, incorporating voices from states across the country. Hannah wrote a script and encouraged seniors to submit videos that she merged into a powerful video message that acknowledges the challenges faced, but also the power of finding new ways to connect, learn and celebrate.
“We have been patiently waiting…We have been waiting our entire lives. And we will still be recognized. We want you to know we are there for you. We will do this together,” Greenblott says in the video. “We have come together and have found other ways to stay connected…we are a part of a piece of history.”
The Out-of-Door Academy is proud of Hannah’s initiative to showcase this unique experience she and her classmates are facing.