Although our NYGEAR UP seniors’ school year transitioned to a distance learning model in March and in-person, large-scale events are now postponed or cancelled due to the health emergency, each of our NYGEAR UP sites across the state has been busy creating virtual celebrations to honor our graduates.
May 1st has traditionally been College Signing Day which, along with high school graduation, ranks as a significant event signifying our six-year journey with our NYGEAR UP students. To recognize and pay tribute to our seniors, each of our sites staged virtual Signing Day events. Due to COVID-19, many of the colleges have extended their deposit deadlines into June, so these virtual events will continue through the month of May. We are extremely proud of our NYGEAR UP students and their determination to attend college in the fall of 2020.
Celebrating milestones like Signing Day is bittersweet for our students, especially when they must be celebrated virtually, as expressed by Rochester NY GEAR UP student Jamila Jenkins: “I can’t believe this is the end of my High School year. I never would have thought that March 13 would be the last time I would see my classmates. I thought we would have more time to build up memories before we take our own steps into adulthood. My heart goes out to my graduating class – this might feel like the end of our story, but it is just the end of a chapter. We sign out together as the Class of 2020 without any regrets. I love y’all so much.”
Enjoy these photos of NYGEAR UP College Signing Day celebrations and join us in celebrating the Class of 2020!