While going back and forth about how to write this letter for you all, I decided that I didn’t have much authority to tell you how to reflect on your time at Wake Forest. As a junior, I can only imagine the varied emotions that you have experienced in the past few months. So, in crafting this piece, I decided to go straight to the source: your own peers.
In a letter to incoming freshmen, Samantha Smart wrote of the uniquely rare relationships you form at Wake Forest with everyone from your friends and classmates to professors and staff — being especially appreciative of Ms. Rosalyn, who never forgot her Starbucks order.
Throughout his piece titled “Our Wake Forest,” Alejandro Gonzalez lamented the loss of his senior year, highlighting how he was unable to experience all of the things that make Wake Forest great (meeting with professors, lunch in The Pit, dancing at Last Resort and enjoying a sunshine-filled darty, just to name a few) for the last time.
While pushing for a postponed commencement in a joint editorial, Lillian Johnson and Amanda Wilcox shared their love for Wake Forest’s traditions: “We chose Wake Forest [because of them] … we were attracted to the school spirit that’s encapsulated in rolling the quad or in the playing of Wait Chapel’s bells everyday at 5 p.m.” They even snuck in a line about our historic win against Duke in basketball earlier this year.
Natalie Alms, in a guest column for the Salisbury Post, shared how difficult it has been to emotionally process the abrupt end to her senior year. Yet, as she left campus with her belongings, she knew she was bringing “the lessons [she’s] learned and the friendships [she’s] gained” along with her.
Echoing a similar sentiment, Alice Romanov grappled with the upsetting end to her senior year in a piece titled “Class of 2020: Grief, Gratitude, Growth.” Although she mourned the loss of her final year of college, she recognized that being apart from her campus and friends allowed her to express a profound gratitude for her Wake Forest experience.
As these six seniors so eloquently described, you have all become experts in what it means to be a Demon Deacon over the past four years. Being a Wake Forest graduate means more than just being well-versed in your major and minor. It means that you encapsulate the spirit of Pro Humanitate, and understand that success can be defined in varied ways. It means that you value friendships and care about the world around you. It means that, as a Wake Forest graduate, you will always lead a life of compassion.
So, while it is easy to focus on the time you have lost, our 2020 Graduation Tabloid aims to celebrate all that you have achieved during your four years as Demon Deacons. From traveling the world and spearheading campus traditions to researching burgeoning topics and racking up countless accolades, this year’s senior class continues to uphold the legacy of our beloved Mother So Dear. So, please enjoy this special series celebrating you and your peers. Congratulations, Class of 2020!
Olivia Field | 2020 Editor-in-Chief