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The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

Senior activities offer memorable experiences before graduation

By Brian Ly | Staff Writer

The Senior Court poses for a photo at the Senior Dinner on May 22, with King Jack Chiou and Queen Hermione Borisuthirattana
Photo courtesy of Jack Chiou.

   Throughout this month, Gabrielino High School’s administration, Senior Parent Committee, Senior Class Council, and ASB have worked together to host activities for the senior class. “Senior Countdown to Graduation” involves events up to graduation on June 8. 

   Senior Sunset is a new activity that occurred on May 28. As the last social event, this event aims to allow seniors to gather together and watch the sun set, socially distanced.

   ASB planned activities to liven it up, including decorations for photos. An anonymous source also indicated that there could potentially be fireworks at the event.

   The Senior Dinner, held May 22, was another social event where students were able to participate in various activities. 

   To attend the event, students had to book who they would be sitting with and show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. While students were not allowed to dance, events included photo booths, flipbooks, caricature artists, and dinner.

   Because of COVID-19, social distancing guidelines ensure events do not have too many students in one place. 

  “These [senior events] are more special this year because there was so much uncertainty with them even taking place,” stated ASB Advisor Edith Gonzalez. “The administration and ASB are excited and very happy to be able to offer something memorable for seniors, even if it is a little different.”

   This was one of the most noticeable changes, as in-person events are restricted, but ASB and the planning committees have aimed to keep them meaningful despite this setback. Students have expressed enthusiasm towards the events despite the changes. 

   “The hope is that seniors attend and enjoy these activities. I’ve enjoyed the activities that have taken place so far, and I look forward to seeing how these events pan out,” stated ASB President Kelly Tran. “I know my friends are excited to have something because many of us thought we wouldn’t even have graduation.”

   So Long Senior Spirit Week, held May 17-22, was a virtual event with online submissions that incorporated prompts such as twinning with friends and dressing up as childhood characters. While this was dedicated to seniors, other grade levels could also participate to earn class clash points. 

   Memory Week, held May 10-14, was also held online. The week consisted of activities such as sending in baby pictures for a video collage, nostalgia bingo, and song submissions from seniors to create a coming-of-age playlist. 

   Seniors who attended Coolidge, Mckinley, Roosevelt, Washington, or Wilson Elementary School were also allowed to participate in in-person class photos on May 12 with their elementary peers. 

   Longtime traditions such as Senior Chalking were previously held in the large lunch quad where seniors illustrated their college plans using chalk. This year it was held May 5-7, at the front entrance of the campus. 

   Originally Rejection Ice Cream, Gabrielino changed the event to Choice Cookies this year. Seniors participated on May 3 by bringing an acceptance letter, rejection letter, or speaking about their future college plans for a custom-made cookie ordered for this event.

   As the first event that started the countdown, the Senior Drive Thru Parade was held on May 1. The event allowed seniors to decorate their cars and drive through a parade in the parking lot of the Gabrielino campus; taking pictures and being cheered on and celebrated along the way. 

   “We are all trying to grasp that familiarity and normality from life before the pandemic,” said Joann Ma, Senior Class Vice President. “And when events that we have watched all the other graduating classes experience get offered now, it is truly something to look forward to.”

Photo courtesy of Kelly Tran

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Senior activities offer memorable experiences before graduation