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WHY HELPING THE CLASS OF 2020 OUT IS IMPORTANT TO ME

The Class of 2020 has had everything thrown at them. Rescheduled or outright cancelled graduation ceremonies, proms, senior activities.

 

It goes without saying that they still deserve to have these experiences. While we realize that postponing, alternating, or even cancelling these events was necessary to prevent the spread of a pandemic, it is important to realize that the Class of 2020 still deserves to have these experiences when it is safe to make that possible for them.

I was homeschooled as a kid, and ended up getting a GED. I had a graduation ceremony for that, thanks to the wonderful people who ran the GED program at Ohio Hi-Point Career Center back in 1998 when I completed the requirements for mine. They didn't offer caps, just gowns, so I didn't truly have the full "cap and gown" graduation ceremony until I graduated from the University of Toledo in 2009.

I didn't have a prom until I was 37, which I know sounds strange as hell, maybe even a little creepy, but just hear me out...and yes, it does count. I admit, never having gone to prom ate at me, particularly in my early 20s for some reason. I eventually put it behind me, thinking oh well, I wasn't meant to have that moment, until I completed the old draft of the Never Give Up script (where Nick, not Sam, was the antagonist who caused Elise to miss her senior prom), and as I was writing these scenes, realized that I, having never been to a prom at that point, had little to no experience in how to visualize such a scene, other than what I'd seen in movies. In doing some research, I learned that there were adult proms, which are basically fundraiser parties themed like a prom, but for adults. I decided that I would seek my closure as soon as possible, and in 2017 attended the last Adult Prom to be held at the historic Riverside Inn in Cambridge Springs, Pennsylvania - it burned down in a fire literally days after the event.

I feel like those of us who got to experience these events, even if in a more non-traditional sense as in my case, should do what we can to help the Class of 2020 experience these moments as soon as it is safe to do so. Yeah, live goes on, but it doesn't hurt to give yourself a second chance at missed experiences, either. 

Blake Hutchison

Homeschooled/GED, Class of 1998

B.A., University of Toledo, Class of 2009

Founder, Sansevieria Media Group

Writer, Nobody's Property series

© 2016-2020 by Blake Hutchison dba Sansevieria Media Group. All Rights Reserved.