Wayzata Graduates Pick up Diplomas in Simple Ceremony
In a school year unlike any other, it’s only fitting that Wayzata High School’s class of 2020 would get a graduation ceremony unlike any other.
In a normal year, the roughly 900 students who make up Wayzata’s senior class would celebrate the end of their long journey at the University of Minnesota’s Mariucci Arena.
Instead, they picked up their diplomas from the concession stand of Wayzata’s football stadium.
“As you might imagine, it’s been an incredibly challenging year,” said Scott Gengler, Wayzata High School’s principal. “Terribly disappointing for many of our seniors.”
The COVID-19 pandemic forced schools to shut down back in March, throwing the school year into disarray. Wayzata officials held out hope that they could hold the graduation at Mariucci Arena in August, but two weeks ago, they found out they had to cancel that as well.
“And so we, as quickly as we could, turned it around to try to create this ceremony and this event [Tuesday] for our students,” Gengler said.
‘Makes us stand out’
While it’s far from the perfect scenario, this diploma distribution ceremony still gives students the opportunity to walk across a stage and have their picture taken by a professional photographer.
“Considering everything going on, I think it’s better than no ceremony at all, so that’s good,” said Ammaar Doctor, a Wayzata senior.
“Yeah it’s definitely different, and kind of makes us stand out this year,” said Harsheen Batra, a Wayzata senior.
The class of 2020 probably wanted to stand out for different reasons, but Batra looked on the positive side of the last few months.
“I think it really shows the resilience of everyone, how we can easily cope with challenges,” Batra said. “And it kind of just shows like, the personality of everyone here, that no matter what the world throws at us, we’re able to move forward.”
A virtual graduation ceremony, complete with commencement speeches, will take place on July 1 at 7 p.m.