Sunday, April 21, 2024

Senior traditions of the past and present

There is no doubt that students look forward to senior year because of the celebratory festivities that honor achievements. These festivities allow for bonding time with fellow students in their graduating class, but this year’s schedule of senior traditions looks different than past years’ due to the COVID-19 pandemic. So what exactly is the Naples High Class of 2021 doing this year to commemorate senior year? 

Although there is not going to be a school-run prom taking place, seniors are still being thrown an event in replacement, called Senior Celebration. 

“On the 28th of April, the Senior Celebration is going to be at Baker Park, and it’s going to be a get together for seniors where we’re asking them to come dressed in their finest to spend some time together as a senior class,” Ernie Modugno, the Athletics Director and Activities Coordinator, said. “There will be food, drinks and music and we’ll have a professional photographer there.” 

In the past, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, seniors would have a myriad of celebratory events, days and even trips taking place during this time of year. 

“By now we would have gone to Grad Bash in Orlando and prom would be the first weekend of May at the Naples Beach Club, and that is something that can’t take place this year,” Modugno said. “We have a senior skip day at the Naples Beach Club, which is a fun afternoon where seniors can get together and use the facilities.” 

The Senior Skip Day at the Naples Beach Club has not been officially cancelled yet, and the school is still deciding whether it can work out this year or not. 

Seniors from past classes feel thankful that senior traditions were able to take place as normal in their graduating year. 

“I’m so grateful for all the activities I got to do with my class,” Class of 2019 graduate Annalise Eisold said. “I think it brought us closer together and it was a super fun way to celebrate all our accomplishments.”

Naples High is hoping to successfully hold all senior traditions next school year, meaning prom, Senior Skip Day, Grad Bash and a full-capacity graduation. As of now, SGA elections are taking place, which will help determine what rising seniors will take part in next year and play a role in determining future plans. 

“The [SGA elections] are the first real thing we have involving planning for next year,” Mudugno said. “We’re hoping that everything is back to normal [next year] and we won’t have to worry about social distancing and face coverings.”

Despite many senior traditions being halted this year due to safety precautions, seniors and the administrative staff have remained determined to make the most of the year to truly recognize all the seniors’ perseverance and accomplishments. 

I think that they have handled it with such tremendous resolve to overcome it, and to be successful. They might not recognize it now, but then look back and appreciate the last 14 months, and they’re going to be stronger and better.

– Principal Darren Burkett



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