Members of Class of 2020 Receive Their Diplomas — Social Distancing Style

A Watertown high School senior smiles for photos after getting his diploma during a unique graduation ceremony for the Class of 2020, standing next to WHS Principal Shirley Lundberg.

Watertown High School’s seniors claimed their diplomas in person at Victory Field on Saturday, but that was about all that was normal about graduation day for the Class of 2020.

The atmosphere around Victory Field because the frenzy of activity was just spread out throughout the day as Watertown Public School officials put on a socially distanced ceremony to comply with the state’s COVID-19 guidelines.

Each half hour a set of cars pulled up, the graduate stepped out and walked up to a small stage where Principal Shirley Lundberg waited with a diploma. Meanwhile, the family could stand along the small fence along the baseball field to cheer and take photos.

“It’s a little different the way they did it,” said graduate Cameron Carr, who said last week’s Rolling Rally was the highlight of the graduation activities in the COVID-19 era. “That was great. I wasn’t going to go but decided to do it at the last minute. They should do that every year.”

Family of a WHS senior take photos as she receives her diploma at Victory Field, Saturday.

Senior Toni Carton said simply, “It’s very much an experience.”

After getting their diploma, students got to take off their mask and have a picture taken by a professional photographer. Then they went to a table where they got a gift bag including a program, a water bottle and awards, said Linda Tracy the administrative assistant with the WHS Guidance Department.

“If they got an academic award, sports award or any award we give them that, since everything was announced virtually,” Tracy said.

Only a handful of school officials took part in the ceremony. The guidance councilors read out the names. Principal Lundberg, who is retiring this year, stood on the small stage. Superintendent Dede Galdston and Assistant Superintendent Theresa McGuinness stood nearby.

“It’s going well,” Lundberg said after the first group of students. She had hopes of finishing shortly after 2:30 as she stood on a hot and sunny Victory Field at about 10 a.m.

A graduate and his family make their way back to their car after taking part in the social distanced Class of 2020 graduation.

The ceremony and the speeches given by the valedictorian, salutatorian and class president will be compiled into a video and put on the Class of 2020 graduation website, Lundberg said. The site will also have the awards ceremony, a video featuring messages from members of graduating class, and one made by the faculty and staff. Click here to go to the Class of 2020 website.

Before making their way to Victory Field, the cars gathered at the parking lot of the Department of Public Works Facility, just next to the field, said Watertown Police Officer Kerry Kelley, who helped plan the logistics.

After they got out at the field, there were arrows and boxes on the ground for parents to family to follow.

“We wanted to organize it so that it is socially distanced, but make it feel normal,” said Kelley, who is the WHS School Resource Officer. “Safe but symbolic.”

A Watertown High School Class of 2020 graduate gets her picture taken after getting her diploma at Victory Field.

Watertown High School Class of 2020

Aysar Mohammad Abbas

+# David Abrahamyan

+# Anna Nicole Aiello

Relfa Maria Amador Proano

Lauren Mary Amedio

Maximo Carlos Archila

Lillian Eva Arzumanyan

Jonathan Carlos Auerbach

John Joseph Avakian

Kristen Mary Beach

Annabella Kaitlyne Beck

# Devon Granville Breen

Evan Thomas Britner

Julianna Linda Cacia

Antoni Calisir

# Emily Sara Campbell

Kevin Daniel Cardoso

Cameron Kay’von Carr

Alyssa Jordan Carroll

A long distance view of the set up for the Class of 2020 graduation ceremony, which was impacted by the COVID-19 social distancing rules. One graduate, in the middle, makes his way to the small stage, while another, bottom right, prepares to have her photo taken.

+# Antonina Marie Carton

+#@ Liam Daniel Carvajal-Janke

# Brittany Elizabeth Catsoulis

Dario Henry Christie

+#* Elias Ruth Cherry-German

Shant Manuel Cimenian

Liam Vachon Connelly

Brennan James Cook

Daniel Griffin Corbett

Ryan Vitor Batista Da Silva

* Guilherme Lima De Oliveira

Olivia Lee DeKoster

Jarod Edward Demichele

Samuel Deossa Bedoya

Emma Ann Dickie

Vera Faye Doob

Delanie Anne Dunn

Oliver Kenneth Eason

Jack Peter Edgely

+# Anna Margaret Fabian

Beatrix Gomes Ferreira

Aldeir Galdino Da Silva Filho

Benjamin Bouldin Fiorentino

+# Evan Michael Fleischer

Kurstin Marie Florio

+# Helen Gjino

Gerson Abelardo Gomez Pocon

* Josselyn Estefany Gonzalez-Teo

# Kevin Joseph Greene

Joseph Robert Griffin

Adam Cherif Guenoune

George D. Gutarov

Andres Epigmenio Atonatiu Guzman

Henry Thomas Hartshorn

Christopher Matthew Hatfield

Dylan Hickey

Hakeem Hirji

Hassan Ali Houjazy

Laura Kim Thi Howe

A family gets in the car and prepares to head home after taking part in their small portion of the 2020 Watertown High School graduation.

Shadi Idelkanoun

Victor Jordan Ivanov

Rojin Jajan

* Ivan Dmitrievich Kalachev

+# Yeraz Leeza Kaligian

+# Gevork George Karapetyan

Alek Kebabjian

Madison Elizabeth Keller

Allison Jordan Kennedy

* Mishleen Kamil Kerio

Isabella Francesca DeCarlo Keuchkarian

# Juliette Nicole Keuchkarian

Brendan Michael King

Ana Harley Langdon

* Brandon Eduardo Latin Hernandez

Juliana Rosalie Bonica Lavery

Matthew John LeBlanc

Duncan Alexander Lepera

# Angelina Men-Ting Li

Crystal Victoria Lopez Polanco

Jonathan Michael Lucas

Alexander Shaw MacNeill

Winter Elizabeth Mahon

# Ani Nanor Manjikian

Divya Mannan

Brian Steven Manning

Helen Margaryan

Robert Levon Margaryan

+# Anais Kamila Markwood

# Andrea Michaela McAdam

Timothy Brent McCall

+# Liam John McCurley

Dylan McNicholas

Vicken Meneshian

Jake Edward Monahan

Karim Monroe

John Donato Moynihan

* Isaac Mugomba

Rose Marie Muldrew

Rebecca Jade Musto-Krol

* Srinivasa Mahidhar Naraharisetty

Saron Nebiye

Daniel Thommas Nobre

Ashley Elizabeth Nygren

Kevin Christopher O’Neil

Milagros Ailen Ortiz

Aaron Sujay Panchu

# Anna Irene Papayannopoulos

# Ella Victoria Pastore

# Krishna Mukesh Patel

Danielle Rose Pellegrini

Madeline Mildred Poplawski

Nayara Soares Ribeiro

Keith Edward Ricci

Gabrielle Maria Richard

Danya Abdulkader Rifai

* Nayara Victoria Soares da Costa Rocha

Marialda Romei

Jonathan Josue Salem-Chacon

Jason Eric Santos

Melania Santourian

# Ashley Elizabeth Shaughnessy

Ian Campbell Simpson

# Rachael Claire Stokes

Caileigh Sullivan

# Emma Rose Surenian

Aurise Susanne Tattrie

Daniel Zacarias Tejada

Gabriel Antonio Tejada

# Isabella Gayane Terzian

+# Lakshmi Thangaraj

+# Martin Frederick Tibets

#* Siranush Helen Tolmoyan

# Nicole Tamara Topanian

Nayeli Torres Febus

+# Maia Vachon

Sarah Kristine Vail

Mia Vera Venezia

Michael Anthony Vick

Carlo Sarkis Vosbigian

+# Anthia Dora Vrahliotis

Lucas Arran Watson

+# Raymond Journey Whitney

Brianna Feeney Williams

Alexis Edyanna Willis

+# Crystal Nancy Yapoudjian

@ Hatydzha Muradovna Yelliyeva

Mia Elizabeth Zarkadas

(+ – Cum Laude Society, # – National Honor Society, * – Seal of Biliteracy, @ – Seal of Biliteracy with Distinction)

2 thoughts on “Members of Class of 2020 Receive Their Diplomas — Social Distancing Style

  1. Congratulations Class Of 2020 go an show the world what you have to offer! I am so very proud of you and honored too have taught you.

    Congratulations Ms.Johnson on teacher of the year very well deserved. My opinion ABCD award above beyond commitment deserved award. Many have not deserved it.

    Retirees I hope you enjoy your retirement.
    Mary Russo

  2. Ceremony was underwhelming, rushed and disappointing. However, the logistics of moving the event along in an orderly fashion were quite exceptional. Let’s hope that the town and kids never have to experience these half measures again!

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