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Observer Editorial: Thank you, seniors

| Friday, April 24, 2020

This isn’t how any of us wanted the year to end.

The misfortune of losing two months of what seems like the ever-fleeting college experience would be difficult for any student, but for the collective class of 2020 at Holy Cross, Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame, it’s nothing short of devastating. What should have been eight weeks of celebration, carefree memories and carefully planned goodbyes turned into a hasty exit in the midst of a pandemic. We understand that, really, there is nothing anyone can say that would possibly make it better, and while we wish things were different, we empathize with you. This sucks.

Still, despite these setbacks, the senior classes of the tri-campus community have managed to accept this chaotic reality we live in now with grace and dignity — taking this difficult, heartbreaking situation and making the best of it. You are entitled to feel all the sadness and grief in the world, and yet, we see students living every day, adjusting, moving forward and working to help others, working to embody the spirit of our three institutions and continuing to make us proud to be Irish, Belles and Saints with you.

Seniors, your contributions to the tri-campus community over the past four years are unparalleled. You have been a force for good on all three campuses — working for change in the community, serving as passionate leaders in dorms, intramural sports teams and clubs. You have sparked class discussion, engaged in research and most importantly, supported your friends the whole way. Though your presence on campus will be missed, we appreciate all the ways you have helped inspire your peers over the last four years. We are proud of you and will miss you greatly.

Though we would normally recognize the senior classes in a commencement issue — with graduation ads, features, columns and more — physically printing a 50-page paper remotely is not in our future. Still, we will be publishing an online edition. We at The Observer want to provide the space to celebrate your accomplishments, even if not in our traditional manner.

We especially wanted to recognize the seniors who contributed to The Observer this past academic year. Though we can’t finish out the semester together and celebrate as we had originally planned, their contributions to the paper and to the tri-campus community during their time on campus have truly transformed our organization.

To the seniors from our 2019-2020 Editorial Board — Kelli, Natalie, Mary, Tom, Evy, Donny, Connor, Nola and Zixu — we thank you for your patience and guidance throughout our shared time at the paper and our transition of leadership even while we weren’t physically together.

And to all seniors from the tri-campus community, once again, we thank you. Times are hard right now, and sometimes it feels like this crisis will never end. Still, there is light at the end of the tunnel and despite the circumstances, we believe in you to go out into the world and truly make it a better place. Home does not simply fade away after four years; it is a place you can always return. Know that graduation does not mean that you are no longer part of our community, and Holy Cross, Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame will always welcome you home.

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