It’s no secret that this graduation season has changed as the world mourns and navigates the changes from the Coronavirus. Graduation ceremonies, parties, sendoffs, and photoshoots are either postponed or cancelled; but, that shouldn’t mean the celebration and recognition of a graduate’s hard work needs to be put on hold or and certainly not forgotten. In the age of COVID-19 it is we can still pay tribute to the graduate while abiding by the CDC and government regulations during this pandemic. I’ve put together a list of 10 ways to safely celebrate this year’s graduates. Keep reading!

Photo: Macaila Britton

Photo: Macaila Britton

10 ways to celebrate graduation at home during the coronavirus:

  1. Senior Announcements

    Send out graduation announcements for this year’s grade school, middle school, high school, or college level graduates This is a sweet way to stay in touch with those near and far and remind them of your hard work in school during the past school year.

Redeem At:    Basic Invite

Redeem At: Basic Invite

2. plan a Virtual Party

I know it’s not the same as an in person one- in the meantime, until the rescheduled date comes around seize the technological advancements we have, helping us to stay connected with our friends and family virtually. Zoom, FaceTime, Google Hangouts, Facebook Messenger Video, Instagram Messenger Video, etc. are a few of the platforms providing the support to make this happen. Set a date and time for everyone to jump online to party together! Plus, what a fun challenge/ excuse to dress up, make their favorite party snack, and talk about something other than COVID-19 or work.

3. have an At Home Ceremony

If you are living with others, get your house mates and family members involved! Wear your cap and gown to the living room and carry out the celebration. Put on your favorite song and have a modernized “walk out” a fun processional to it in your cap and gown!

4. put together a College Announcement

Yes, you can Still send out those announcements to tell everyone about the decision you made- share the good news about taking a gap year or the college you have chosen to attend! People want to hear about your plans and the world is craving more good news right now- let this be the happiness that overwhelms others.

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5. Simple Thank You Cards

For most, the last day in the classroom wasn’t one they were prepared for. Students, this just doesn’t hit you hard- teachers love being able to go through their classroom traditions and send off their students to their next adventure. Send a thank you card to the teachers, school staff, and administration. Think of the teachers you like- and even the ones you dislike- and simply show them how you are grateful for them taking the time to teach you and your class. This will make their day and also give you an activity to do during quarantine while serving others. Plus, you can include your fabulous graduation photos if you want!

Redeem At:    Basic Invite

Redeem At: Basic Invite

6. Virtual graduation

Connect with your favorite class, teachers, a group of friends, etc. and ask everyone to schedule a virtual graduation. In fact, you could take this to the next level and try to get your school administration involved if they aren’t planning one already. No, this won’t be the same as in person, but there will be room for the special moment when the graduating class can all come together to honor each other and the years of long, hard work in achieving this milestone.

7. Graduation Tour

Call your neighbors, leave a note on their front door- ask your community to get in their cars and form a circle on your block or in a large area where the graduates can- in their car- drive around that larger circle of cars to wave and hear everyone cheering for their graduation accomplishments! Invite friends, family, and teachers to join in on this too!

8. Class snail mail

Bring back hand written letters. Ask classmates, friends and others in your town/ that you know of graduating as well, to be pen pals. Share your e-learning experience, tell them what college you’ve committed to and why- or why you’re taking a gap year. Use this time to connect with those who understand what it’s like having an unconventional graduation.

9. Front Porch/ Socially Distant Photo Shoot

Some photographers are offering CDC compliant social distancing photoshoots. They will come to your front porch/ backyard and take your graduation photos! For those in the Chicagoland area, fill out the form below and I can do this for you- I’d be honored to help you make this time more memorable and re-focus on all of your accomplishments. You deserve to be celebrated and to remember all of your hard work, years from now with these photos.

10. all of the above or create your own idea

If you like more than one of these ideas, there is no rule saying you need to only choose one to celebrate- use as many of these option as you want or create your own way of celebrating by keeping yourself and others safe during the Coronavirus. This pandemic doesn’t determine your success or limit you from achieving goals or receiving the recognition you deserve. Graduates, I’m sorry this is your reality right now- but I look forward to seeing how you and others use this as a challenge to be creative with your plans!

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