Tenacity in the Trauma

By: Ellie Parker  |  May 12, 2020

By Ellie Parker, Features Editor

Our generation has been called many things: spoiled, entitled, reckless

We have assumed blame for an array of societal calamities, ranging from the advent of instant gratification to the decline of liberal arts and culture. We have been charged with saving the planet, and we have been condemned for not doing enough. 

But now, with all eyes on the graduating class of 2020, I would like to add some new words to the Gen C vernacular: graceful, poised, resilient. 

I, like many of you, still can’t wrap my mind around this situation. 

We have had a pinnacle time, arguably the climax of our young adult lives, taken from us in a seemingly cosmic series of events. And, at the risk of sounding far too millennial, it is just not fair. 

But more than that, it is traumatic. 

There are horrifying crises taking place right outside of our doors, from mass deaths to xenophobia. And while our loss seems minimal in the grand scheme of things, it is a loss nonetheless. We are enduring a premature maturation and I for one am just not ready. 

I wasn’t ready to say goodbye to my home for the past three years. I wasn’t ready to receive my diploma on my laptop. I wasn’t ready to grow up.

But as the months tick on with no end in sight, my sorrow has turned into awe. 

To the class of 2020, we have done ourselves proud. We have left a lasting impression and have laid claim as a thoughtful and strong generation. We are not who we were at our last graduation. We have suffered a hellish transition and it is only going to get harder as we learn how to adjust to our new normal. But the more I think about it, the more I am sure that we’re the perfect people for the job. 

As products of a fast-paced and ever-changing era, we know how to adapt. For years, we have taught ourselves to find solace in the different and rage against convention. We have built a life for ourselves online and have learned how to connect thousands of miles apart. What’s another six feet?

As we steadily approach the end of our time together, I feel honored to be a member of this graduating class. Be it online or in person, I could not imagine a more tenacious group of alum. 

Congratulations, on a job well done.