During the course of my 30 year teaching career and my time in the House of Delegates, I have attended many graduation ceremonies. They hold great meaning for graduates and their families, giving us all hope for the future. Each is unique in its own way yet holds much in common with other equivalent commemorations. While current events have altered the manner in which we celebrate, I wanted to take this opportunity to congratulate and commend the Class of 2020.
This year, Virginians from all walks of life have been impacted by COVID-19. One of the most visible changes is the closure of school buildings and the transition to online and remote learning for students and teachers. It has been particularly trying on seniors who have missed their final months with friends and teachers. 2020 certainly wasn’t the year that many had planned.
No matter the path you take after graduating, hard work will serve you well. You have the opportunity to achieve your goals, dreams, and aspirations. But like we have already seen this year, things won’t always go as planned. Your determination, coupled with the skills you learned in and out of the classroom, will help you navigate the challenges that life throws at you. I am confident that you will succeed and thrive.
Our Commonwealth’s future is in your hands, and it is a very bright future. I send you my best wishes on this special occasion and throughout your life. Congratulations to the class of 2020!