How to celebrate graduation in a pandemic
April 25, 2021
Despite all of its challenges, the year of 2020-2021 has undoubtedly fostered a new sense of creativity among those who were stuck in quarantine for long amounts of time. From picking up new hobbies and binging an impressive amount of TV shows to throwing drive-by birthday parties, if there is anything we’ve learned about young people during the time of COVID-19, it is our ability to adapt and imagine new ways to entertain ourselves.
And while the vaccines are rapidly rolling out, the pandemic is far from over. Therefore, we must continue to innovate a little extra for a little longer and find new ways to celebrate the end of another triumphant chapter.
And let’s face it: As a senior having survived your last year in virtual or hybrid school, you deserve to let loose and have some fun. Here are a few alternative ideas to get you started:
1. OK, so maybe yet another Zoom call is the last thing you want after finally finishing online school. But virtual parties are still all the rave for some safe, social-distanced fun. Give each other silly senior awards. Maybe even play some Jackbox games together, or laugh while you try and teach your family members how to play Among Us.
2. Watch a movie about graduation. There is no shortage of them. And if you’re looking for a recommendation, “Booksmart” is the way to go. Just maybe not if your grandparents are there. “Legally Blonde” is another classic that deserves an honorable mention. And if you’re feeling a sense of wanderlust, “Into the Wild” is the perfect film to inspire your summer road trip. If you’re more of a TV person, graduation episodes are plentiful too.
3. Have a photoshoot around campus! It’s finally time to get some quality pictures at those photo-op locations you’ve been staking out since freshman year. While you may have to wait in line to snap a pic with local celebrity Alma Mater, the only other downside to graduation photoshoots is face soreness when your parents take a few too many pictures.
4. And last but certainly not least, my personal favorite: Host a socially distanced bonfire and burn all of your papers from your least favorite classes. Watch those assignments go up in flames in a matter of seconds as you reflect on the nostalgic hours you spent completing them. Swap fireside ghost stories for dramatic graduation speeches and embarrassing tales during your time as an Illini. Maybe even join in singing some classic campfire tunes like “Hail to the Orange.”