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[T.C. Williams High School Class of 2020 Graduation, June 13, 2020]

[00:03:19]

>> GREETINGS TO ALL FAMILY, STAFF, PARENTS, NEIGHBORS AND MOST IMPORTANTLY ALL STUDENTS IN THE GRADUATING CLASS OF 2020.

MY NAME IS AMIYA.

WE CELEBRATE AS WE WALK ACROSS THE STAGE.

WE WERE HIT WITH A PANDEMIC THAT TOOK AWAY OUR PLANS AND ALSO OF OUR LOVED ONES.

WE ALSO WITNESSED MULTIPLE MURDERS OF BLACK PEOPLE.

WE FIGHT SYSTEMATIC AND INSTITUTIONALIZED RACISM.

EVEN IN OUR CITY, OUR VOICES CONTRIBUTED TO THE REMOVAL OF THE STATUE THAT ONCE CELEBRATED CONFEDERATE SOLDIERS.

THESE ARE MEMORABLE AND INTENTIONAL.

THEY'RE SHOWING US WE'RE CAPABLE OF CHANGING THE NORMALITY AND BRING CHANGE AGAINST UNACCEPTABLE JUSTICES.

BEING IN A SWIMMING POOL OF DIFFERENT ETHNICITIES AND CULTURES AND BACKGROUND HAS GIVEN US THE OPPORTUNITY THAT MANY HIGH SCHOOLS CANNOT SAY THEY HAD.

THIS GAVE US A UNITED ATMOSPHERE WHERE WE COULD FIND SMALLER COMMUNITIES THAT CONTRADICT TO OUR SIMILARITIES AND GIVE US A CHANCE TO TEACH, LEARN AND UNDERSTAND ONE ANOTHER'S DIFFERENCES.

WHETHER YOU'RE PART OF THE BLACK STUDENT UNION, GAY STRAIGHT ALLIANCE OR PLAYING YOUR FAVORITE SPORT.

TC IS A PLACE WE CALL HOME.

WE HAVE PROVEN TO BE STRONG AND POWERFUL PEOPLE.

EVEN THOUGH WE CAN'T CHANT TO OUR FRESHMEN OR STAY FAREWELL TO OUR FAVORITE TEACHERS, WE ARE ABLE TO TAKE WITH US THE KNOWLEDGE OF KNOWING WE'RE ABLE TO ADAPT.

ADAPT TO CHANGES, DISAPPOINTMENT AND DIFFERENT COMMUNITIES.

WITH THESE TOOLS AND THE YEAR WE HAD, WE'RE ABLE TO CONQUER ANYTHING AND MAKE CHANGE THAT WILL EMPOWER THOSE AFTER US.

>> WHAT TO I LOVE? I LOVE MY FAMILY, FRIENDS, BOOKS.

I HAVE A PLACE TO SLEEP, EAT, BE HAPPY, FOR THE MOST PART.

THE SCHOOL THAT TEACHERS THAT CARE ABOUT ME AND ACTUALLY TRY TO HELP ME GET MORE DONE.

I ALREADY SAID I LOVE MY FAMILY.

YEAH, I LOVE THEM.

>> OKAY.

>> I LOVE MY FAMILY.

RIGHT, MOM, DAD.

>> I LOVE MY FAMILY.

>> I LOVE MY FAMILY.

>> I LOVE MY FAMILY.

>> I LOVE MY FRIENDS.

>> I LOVE BEING AROUND THE PEOPLE THAT MAKE ME HAPPIEST.

>> I LOVE MY WHOLE SUPPORT SYSTEM.

>> FAMILY AND FRIENDS BEEN THERE SINCE DAY ONE.

[00:05:01]

>> EVERYBODY BEEN IN MY LIFE.

>> IF NOT FOR THESE PEOPLE, I WOULDN'T BE THE PERSON THAT I AM NOW.

I LOVE ALL OF THEM.

>> I LOVE THE PEOPLE IN MY LIFE THAT MOTIVATE ME.

>> EVERYONE WHO A

>> I LOVE MY SUPPORT SYSTEM.

>> I LOVE THE TIME SPENT BEFORE AND AFTER SCHOOL WITH MY PROFESSORS.

I'M GRATEFUL FOR THOSE TIMES.

>>

>> I LOVE MY PARENTS WHEN SACRIFICED A LOT FOR ME AND WORKED HARD FOR ME TO HAVE A BETTER FUTURE.

>> I LOVE MY MOM, I LOVE MY DOG.

>> MY DOG, HANGING OUT WITH FRIENDS.

>> ONE THING I LOVE ARE ANIMALS, ESPECIALLY FISH.

>> MY MOM, MY BRRS, MY GRANDPARENTS.

>> HAVING A LARGE FAMILY.

>> WHAT DO YOU LOVE?

>> I LOVE YOU.

>> I LOVE MY FAMILY, FRIENDS, GIRLFRIEND.

>> I LOVE WHEN I AM AS A PERSON.

>> I LOVE MYSELF.

>> EACH AND EVERY DAY I COULD

>> MY CULTURE.

>> I LOVE MUSIC, LEARNING, MY HERITAGE AND MY FAMILY.

>> I LOVE MUSIC.

>> I LOVE COOKING FOR MY FAMILY.

>> DANCING.

>> I LOVE SPORTS.

>> I LOVE RUNNING.

>> I LOVE ICE HOCKEY.

>> SOCCER.

>> RUGBY.

>> MY TEAM.

>> CAMPING.

>> MY HORSE.

>> PLAYING A SPORT WITH ALL OF MY FRIENDS.

>> I LOVE TO RUN.

I LOVE TO LEFT.

>> I LOVE SPORTS.

>> I LOVE ROWING.

>> I LOVE PLAYING VIDEO GAMES.

>> I LOVE TO PLAY SPORTS.

JO I REALLY LOVE LEONARDO DA VINCI.

>> I LOVE SCIENCE.

>> BEAUTY, NATURE OFERATE.

>> EARTH.

>> THE OCEAN.

>> I LOVE LISTENING TO STORIES.

>> WRITING POETRY.

>> I LOVE WORDS.

>> TECHNICAL KNOWLEDGE.

>> PART OF A COMMUNITY.

>> I WAS PART OF SOMETHING THAT WAS BIG.

UP >> ARTS.

>> I LIKE OPPORTUNITIES.

>> I LOVE BUILDING MY OWN FUTURE.

>> I LOVE THE UNITED STATES.

>> I LOVE TO SEE PEOPLE PUSH THROUGH AND HELP OTHERS.

>> WATCHING PEOPLE THAT COME FROM NOTHING AND TRYING TO GIVE BACK TO THEIR COMMUNITIES.

>>

[00:10:02]

>> TC WILLIAMS IS THE GREATEST HIGH SCHOOL IN THE NATION.

>> I LOVE THE CLASS OF 2020.

JO GOOD MORNING, CLASS OF 2020.

CONGRATULATIONS ON REACHING THIS MILESTONE IN YOUR LIVES.

TODAY IS A SPECIAL DAY BECAUSE YOU ALL ARE GRADUATING FROM THE TC WILLIAMS HIGH SCHOOL.

IT IS ALSO A UNIQUE TIME IF ALL OF US DURING THIS GLOBAL PANDEMIC.

ONE THING IS FOR SURE, YOU MADE HISTORY BY BEING THE FIRST VIRTUAL GRADUATION IN THE HISTORY OF ALEXANDRIA CITY PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

I KNOW THERE'S SO MANY PEOPLE THAT ARE SO PROUD OF EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU, YOUR PARENTS, YOUR FAMILY, OUR FACULTY, YOUR FRIENDS, ALL WHO SHARE IN THIS WONDERFUL ACHIEVEMENT.

THERE ARE SOME WHO YOU MAY OR MAY NOT KNOW BY NAME.

I WOULD LIKE TO ACKNOWLEDGE A FEW OF THEM TODAY.

THEY PLAYED AN ESSENTIAL PART IN SUPPORTING OUR SCHOOLS AND INSURING THAT EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU HAS THE FINANCIAL CAPITAL, HUMAN AND EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES THIS YOU NEED IN ORDER TO THRIVE AND TO GRADUATE TODAY.

I WANT TO SAY THANK YOU TO OUR SCHOOL BOARD WHO TIRELILESSLY WORK ON YOUR BEHALF EACH AND EVERY DAY, ESPECIALLY DURING THESE TRYING TIMES.

THE HONORABLE CHAIR, CINDY ANDERSON, THE HONORABLE VICE CHAIR, VAN KA NOLAN.

THE HONORABLE MEGAN ALDERTON.

THE HONOR MARGARET LORBAR.

MICHELLE JERRY REESE, CHRISTOPHER SUARES AND HEATHER THORNTON.

I WOULD LIKE TO THANK OUR CITY MANAGER MR. MARK JINX AND OUR CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS BECAUSE THEY HAVE ALSO ALLOWED US TO MAKE IT THIS FAR AND FOR YOU ALL TO GRADUATE TODAY.

MAYOR JUSTIN M WILSON, VICE MAYOR ELIZABETH B BENNETT PARKER.

COUNCILMEN.

COUNCIL WOMEN.

TODAY THERE IS IN DAY QUITE LIKE IT.

IN FACT THERE'S NEVER BEEN A TIME LIKE THIS.

COVID 19 HAS MEANT YOU'RE GRADUATING IN THE MIDDLE OF A GLOBAL PANDEMIC.

A TIME WHEN SCHOOLS, COLLEGES, STORES, OFFICES, AND PRETTY MUCH EVERYTHING HAS BEEN REQUIRED TO CLOSE THEIR DOORS ACROSS THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

MUCH OF THE WORLD.

THESE ARE TIMES WHEN WE CAN ACTUALLY COLLECTIVELY FEEL THE UNCERTAINTY, THE STRESS, THE ANXIETY OF INDIVIDUALS, AS FAMILIES AS A SCHOOL DIVISION AND AS A NATION.

FOR YOU AS GRADUATING SENIORS, IT CERTAINLY MEANT THE LOSS OF OUR TRADITIONAL SENIOR CELEBRATION.

THESE RIGHTS OF PASSAGE THAT YOU WOULD HAVE EXPECTED TO PARTAKE AND ENJOY AS YOU TRANSITION TO THE NEXT PHASE OF YOUR LIVES.

THIS GLOBAL PANDEMIC HAS TOUCH AULD OF US IN SO MANY DIFFERENT WAYS.

THERE'S IN WAY TO FULLY ELIMINATE THE SUFFERING IT HAS BROUGHT.

HOWEVER, THIS GLOBAL PANDEMIC HAS OFFERED US AN OPPORTUNITY.

AN OPPORTUNITY TO PAUSE.

IT HAS GIVEN US AN OPPORTUNITY IT REFLECT ON OUR PRIORITIES, AS WELL AS AN OPPORTUNITY TO PRESS THE RESET BUTTON ON OUR LIVES.

IN MANY WAYS, THESE ARE TIMES THAT BRING WITH THEM GREAT OPPORTUNITY FOR CHANGE.

AT A TIME WHEN ACCESS TO EDUCATION TO TECHNOLOGY IS CRITICAL, WE HAVE BEEN FORCED TO THINK EVEN HARDER ABOUT HOW WE DELIVER EQUITABLE ACCESS TO

[00:15:04]

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES AND EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES FOR ALL STUDENTS NO MATTER THEIR BACKGROUND OR WHERE THEY COME FROM.

THIS GLOBAL PANDEMIC HAS CREATED A MOMENT IN TIME, ONE WHERE WE HAVE A CHANCE TO CREATE A NEW NORMAL.

THIS MAY MEAN REEVALUATING WHO WE ARE AS INDIVIDUALUALS.

MEANS REEVALUATING WHO WE ARE AS A STUDENT BODY AND NATION.

THERE'S IN GOING BACK.

WE CAN ONLY MOVE FORWARD.

CLASS OF 2020, THESE PAST FEW WEEKS PEOPLE HAVE SHOWN THEY'RE TIRED OF THE OLD WAYS OF OUR NATION.

WE WILL NO LONGER PUT UP WITH THE RACIAL INEQUALITIES AND RACISM AND BIGOTRY AND AFRICAN AMERICANS BEING TREATED IN WAYS THEY WOULD NOT CONTEMPLATE TREATING OTHERS.

RECENTLY WE HAVE SEEN PEOPLE PROTEST AND SPEAK UP ABOUT THE SENSELESS MURDER OF TWO AFRICAN AMERICAN MEN, GEORGE FLOYD IN MINNESOTA AND AHMAD AUBREY WHO WAS JOGGING IN A RESIDENT THE NEIGHBORHOOD.

WE WITNESSED AMY COOPER CALLING THE POLICE AND FALSELY STATING HER LIFE IS BEING THREATENED AND IN DANGER BY AN AFRICAN AMERICAN MAN WHILE WALKING HER DOG IN THE PARK.

WHAT HAS BEEN TOLERATED CAN IN LONGER BE TOLERATED.

CLASS OF 2020, WE MUST ADVOCATE FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE AND ANTI RACISM IN AMERICA, REGARDLESS OF YOUR RACE, REGARDLESS OF YOUR BACKGROUND, THIS IS A NEW TIME IN ALL OF OUR LIVES, WHEN ALL LIVES MUST MATTER AND WE MUST RETHINK OUR PRIORITIES, OUR VALUES AND REINVENT A NEW NORMAL.

SO THIS IS A TIME THAT WE MUST UNDERSTAND THE POWER OF PRIVILEGE IN OUR COUNTRY AND EMBRACE OUR DISCOMFORT WHEN DISCUSSING RACE.

CLASS OF 2020 WE MUST ACCEPT THE HARSH REALITY THAT OUR COUNTRY HAS AS A FOUNDATION OF RACISM SINCE THE FIRST AFRICANS WERE KIDNAPPED AND BROUGHT TO JAMESTOWN IN 1619.

YOU ALL HAVE THE POWER TO REWRITE THE NARRATIVE FOR THE FUTURE OF OUR COUNTRY.

YOU ALL HAVE THE ABILITY TO TO REALLY BRING ALL RACISTS TOGETHER, TO OVERCOME ADVERSITY, CLASS OF 2020, EACH AND EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU CAN INSURE THAT WE DO NOT CONTINUE TO REPEAT HISTORY TIME AND TIME AGAIN AND TO PERPETUATE THE RACIAL TENSION THAT CONTINUES TO EXIST, NOT ONLY IN OUR COUNTRY BUT RIGHT HERE IN THE CITY OF ALEXANDRIA.

YOU KNOW, WE'RE ASKING YOU CLASS OF 2020 TO NOT LOOK BACK.

YES, WE MUST REMEMBER OUR HISTORY SO THAT WE DON'T ARE PEAT IT BUT WE WANT YOU TO LOOK FORWARD, WE WANT YOU TO LOOK ON THIS SUMMER, IN THE AS A TIME WHEN YOU MISSED OUT ON YOUR SENIOR EXPERIENCE ALTHOUGH WE KNOW YOU DID.

INSTEAD LOOK FORWARD AND CREATE THIS AS A PIVOTAL MOMENT WHEN WE SAY WE WILL NEVER GO BACK TO THE WAY THINGS WERE.

HOW FAR YOUR VOICE IS HEARD, THAT'S UP TO YOU.

HOW FAR YOU GO TO SEIZE THIS MOMENT IS UP TO YOU.

YOU WILL NEED TO GO OUT AND SEEK IT AND ACHIEVE IT.

YOU CAN ONLY BE HEARD IF YOU ACTIVELY PARTICIPATE.

MY ADVICE TODAY, CLASS OF 2020 IS DON'T JUST GET INVOLVED.

GET ACTIVELY INVOLVED.

DON'T ALLOW THE PAST OR EASTERN TODAY TO DETERMINE YOUR FUTURE.

DON'T ALLOW YOUR LIFE'S CIRCUMSTANCES TO DEFINE WHO YOU WILL BECOME.

I BELIEVE IN EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU.

I KNOW THAT YOU ALL WILL SUCCEED.

ONCE A TITAN, ALWAYS A TITAN.

AND AS A FELLOW TITAN, I KNOW THAT WE ARE GIANTS, BLESSED WITH THE POWER AND THE ABILITY TO CHANGE THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT.

IT IS A TITAN SPIRIT THAT WILL TRANSFORM YOU FROM TC STUDENTS INTO THE NEXT

[00:20:01]

GENERATION OF LEADER WHO WILL CONQUER THIS WORLD.

SO CONGRATULATIONS, CLASS OF 2020.

I WISH YOU ALL THE BEST AND BRIGHTEST OF FUTURES AND I WISH YOU THE BEST OF MAKING THIS WORLD THE KIND OF PLACE THAT YOU AND I WANTED TO BE.

WHETHER YOU KNOW IT OR IN THE, EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU IN THE CLASS OF 2020 HAS A SPECIAL PLACE IN MY HEART AND WILL ALWAYS HAVE A SPECIAL PLACE IN HISTORY, HERE IN THE ALEXANDRIA CITY PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

CLASS OF 2020, CONTINUE TO BE SAFE, CONTINUE TO BE HEALTHY AND CONTINUE TO ADVOCATE.

CONGRATULATIONS, CLASS OF 2020.

THANK YOU.

>> HI, VIRGINIA SENATOR MARK WARNER HERE.

I WANT TO GIVE MY HEARTFELT CONGRATULATIONS TO THE CLASS OF 2020.

CONGRATULATIONS, YOU MADE IT.

I KNOW YOU NEVER EXPECTED TO BE GRADUATING DURING A PERIOD OF A PANDEMIC.

REST ASSURED WE ARE IN THE GREATEST STATE IN THE COUNTRY, AND WE WILL SUCCEED.

UP WHAT HAPPENS AT YOUR LOCAL LEVEL AND STATE LEVEL AND NATIONAL LEVEL EFFECTS YOUR LIVES.

MAKE SURE YOUR VOICES ARE HEARD.

CONGRATULATIONS CLASS OF 2020.

GO TITANS.

>> ONE THING THAT I FEAR ARE EXPECTATIONS.

YOU EXPECT YOUR SENIOR YEAR TO BE GREAT.

EVERYBODY DID.

I EXPECTED TO BE GOING TO SPRING BREAK WITH ALL OF MY GALS, BUT I SPENT SPRING BREAK WORKING BECAUSE MY FAMILY NEED ME.

I HAD TO MEET THEIR EXPECTATIONS BECAUSE IT IS A DIFFICULT TIME.

AND THAT'S WHAT I WANT TO TELL EVERYBODY.

UP >> MY PERSONALLY WILL BE EFFECTED BY CORONAVIRUS.

>> LOSING MY FAMILY.

>> LOSING PEOPLE CLOSE TO ME.

>> I LOST MY GRANDMOTHER.

>> NO LONGER HAVING THEM AROUND.

>> NOW EVERYTHING WILL BE DIFFERENT THAN WHAT WE PERCEIVE NOW.

>> THE ABYSS AFTER DEATH.

>> I FEAR NEVER BEING NOTICED.

>> IN THE BEING HEARD.

>> I FEAR BEING FORGOTTEN.

>> NOT HAVING SOMEONE TO GO TO.

>> I'M AFRAID OF NOT BEING LOVED.

>> I FEAR SCHOOL SHOOTING.

>> THE THING I FEAR THE MOST IS NOT LIVING UP TO THE EXPECTATIONS I SET FOR MYSELF.

>> I'M AFRAID OF THOUGHT KEEPING MY GOALS.

>> FAILURE.

>> FAILURE.

>> FAILURE.

>> I DON'T LIKE TO NOT BE GOOD AT SOMETHING.

>> LIKE BEING ABLE TO SUCCEED.

>> IN THE BEING SUCCESSFUL.

>> I FEAR DISAPPOINTING THOSE THAT GAVE ME THE OPPORTUNITY TO SUCCEED.

>> NOT ANYTHING SIGNIFICANT I'M PROUD OF ONE DAY.

>> NOT BEING PERFECT AND NOBODY LIKES ME.

>> NO LONGER SERVING THE PEOPLE AROUND ME.

>> WHAT WILL PEOPLE SAY IF I DO THIS.

>> MY FEAR OF MAKING OTHER PEOPLE UNHAPPY.

>> I ALSO DON'T WANT TO LIVE MY LIFE SO STRESSED OUT ABOUT GETTING EVERYTHING RIGHT THAT I DON'T LIVE.

>> I FEAR THE FUTURE.

>> THAT KIND OF SCARES ME.

>> THE DARK.

>> TALL MEN.

>> I FEAR THROWING UP.

>> SPIDERS.

>> NEVER WILL MESS WITH.

>>

>> I FEAR THAT WE WILL REACH THE POINT WHERE THE ISSUE OF CLIMATE CHANGE IS NO LONGER SOLVABLE.

>> UNKNOWN.

>> MEDIOCRITY AND BIGOTRY.

>>

>>

>> HAVE REGRETS ABOUT THE FUTURE I CREATED BECAUSE OF THE FEARS AND UNKNOWNS.

>> IN THE BEING ABLE TO THINK THAT I ENJOY THE VIEW.

>> LEAVING MY BEST FRIENDS WHEN I GO TO COLLEGE.

>> I WON'T BE ABLE TO MAKE MEMORIES.

>>

>> WITH ALL MY SCHOOL PROFESSIONALS.

>> TO GO OFF AND SEPARATE.

>> I FEAR GROWING UP.

[00:25:01]

>> MAKING SOME OF THOSE DECISIONS AND I'M SO YOUNG AND I STILL DON'T KNOW WHAT I WANT TO DO.

>> MY BIGGEST ONE IS GROWING UP.

I CAN'T IMAGINE HOW MY LIFE WOULD BE AS AN ADULT AND I LEAVE MY TEAMMATES BEHIND.

>> I'M SHY PERSON AND KEEP TO MYSELF.

I THINK I FEAR IN THE PUTTING MYSELF OUT THERE.

>> I FEAR THE

>> A LOT OF STUFF HAPPENS TO ME THAT MADE ME BECOME

>> I'M PREPARED FOR MY FUTURE AND I'M IN THE FEARFUL.

>> BUT I WILL TRY TO BE THE

>> I'M AFRAID OF DYING WITHOUT MAKING MISTAKES, BECAUSE WE LEARN FROM THEM.

KNOWING THAT WE'RE NOT PERFECT, MAKE US A REMEMBER.

WE'RE THE FUTURE OF THIS COUNTRY.

WE'RE THE FUTURE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

WE'RE THE HEART AND PRIDE OF OUR FAMILIES.

>> GREETINGS TO MY WONDERFUL TITANS, YOU DID IT.

THIS IS A MOMENT OF JOYOUS CELEBRATION AS YOU GRADUATE TC WILLIAMS HIGH SCHOOL.

YOU SHOULD BE PROUD OF ALL YOU ACCOMPLISHED IN ATHLETICS AND CLUBS AND ARTS AND ALL OTHER ENDEAVORS YOU COMPLETED HERE.

BE PROUD AND RAISE YOUR HEAD HIGH.

TODAY MARKS THE END OF AN ERA AND START OF ANOTHER.

I LIKE MANY OF YOU ARE SADDENED ARE NOT TOGETHER AS ONE FAMILY TO HAND OFF DIPLOMAS AND SHAKE HANDS AND HUGS.

THE CLASS OF 2020 HAS ENDURED SO MUCH AND WE WANT TO PUT TOGETHER THIS PRODUCTION AS WE HONOR AND CELEBRATE YOU.

I LOOK FORWARD TOER SEEING EACH OTHER AGAIN AND MAN FOR FUTURE EVENTS TO MAKE UP FOR WHAT YOU HAVE LOST.

A SPECIAL THANKS TO ALL INVOLVED IN MAKING THIS VIRTUAL GRADUATION COME TOGETHER, INCLUDING THE TC WILLIAMS HIGH SCHOOL, STUDENTS AND STAFF AND THE ACPS OFFICE.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR HARD WORK.

WHEN I THINK ABOUT THE CLASS OF 2020, WHAT I REMEMBER IS NOT THE EMOTIONAL SENIOR YEAR THAT WE HAD OR SCHOOL CLOSURES.

WHAT I REMEMBER IS YOUR GENERATION HAS THE POWER TO CHANGE THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT.

I SEE THIS EVERY DAY.

YOUR ADVOCACY AND YOUR SENSE OF JUSTICE AND YOUR UNWILLINGNESS TO CHANGE THE WRONGS IN SOCIETY.

THESE ARE AMAZING TRAITS TO HAVE AND ONES WE NEED.

THERE'S IN OTHER PLACE LIKE TC IN THE WORLD.

WE HAVE STAFF THAT TRULY REPRESENT THE NEW GLEBL MAJORITY.

BEING AT TC HAS HELPED TO PREPARE YOU FOR THE WIDER WORLD.

I'M REMEMBER HOW YOUR CLASS DEVELOPED PERSEVERANCE.

YOU PERSISTED.

OUR RESPONSE TO A WORLDWIDE PANDEMIC IS UNPRECEDENTED AND WE ALL HAVE A NEW WAY OF LIVING.

YOU HAVE DONE IT AND MADE IT HERE TODAY.

WE CONTINUE TO FACE CHALLENGES OF OUR SCHOOL CLOSURES, AS WELL AS THE CLOSURE THAT WE USED TO KNOW AS NORMAL LIFE.

IN RECENT WEEKS, WE HAVE SEWN THE LATEST RESURGENCE OF AN AGE OLD PANDEMIC, RACISM.

WE WITNESSED THE HORRORS UNFOLD OF THE MURDER OF YET ANOTHER BLACK MAN, GEORGE FLOYD.

WE HAVE TO FACE THE DISGRACE IN OUR COUNTRY.

OUR CITIZENS RESPONDED BY TAKING TO THE STREETS TO DEMAND JUSTICE.

WHAT IS DIFFERENT THIS TIME.

THIS IS CERTAINLY NOT THE FIRST TIME OUR CITIZENS ARE TAKEN TO THE STREETS TO PROTEST AGAINST THE HORRORS OF RACISM.

LIFE IS DIFFERENT NOW.

THE IMPACT OF CLOSURES, QUARANTINES, STAY AT HOME ORDERS HAVE MADE A SITUATION WHERE WE CAN'T BURY OUR FEELINGS.

WE CAN'T GO THROUGH LIFE TO DISTRACT US.

THE SHAMEFUL KILLING MUST BE A CATALYST FOR CHANGE.

WE CAN'T CLAIM THE PROBLEM EXISTS SOMEWHERE ELSE.

IT IS A PROBLEM HERE AND THROUGHOUT THE NATION.

I DISCUSS THIS WITH YOU TODAY ON A DAY OF CELEBRATION BECAUSE IT IS THE RIGHT THING TO DO.

YOU ARE A GENERATION THAT IS GOING TO CHANGE THE WORLD AND WHILE WE MAY THINK WE

[00:30:03]

HAVE BASIC FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS, THAT'S IN THE A REALITY FOR ALL OF US.

I ASK YOU TO USE YOUR STRENGTH TO BECOME AGENTS OF CHANGE AND PARTICIPATE IN PRODUCTIVE ACTIONS THAT WILL RESULT IN OUR COUNTRY INSTITUTING JUSTICE THAT HAS BEEN SO ELUSIVE FOR 244 YEARS.

AS DR. KING STATED, TRUE PEACE IS NOT MERELY THE ABSENCE OF TENSION BUT THE PRESENCE OF JUSTICE.

SO, I IMPLORE YOU TO CONTINUE TO ADVOCATE AND USE YOUR SKILLS IT FIGHT THE INJUSTICES IN OUR COUNTRY.

ONLY THROUGH YOUR ACTIVISM AND COMMITMENT WILL WE BE ABLE TO MAKE PROGRESS.

AND WHILE SOMETIMES IT MAY SEEM AS IF CHANGE IS NOT POSSIBLE, YOU MUST REMAIN RESILIENT, NO MATTER HOW DIFFICULT THAT MAY FEEL AT THE CURRENT TIME.

TO DO THIS, LET'S ALL BECOME MORE THAN ALLIES FOR OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS AROUND THE COUNTRY.

LETH BECOME CO CONSPIRATORS WHO LEAN INTO DISCOMFORT AND SPRING INTO ACTION TO DISMANTLE OPPRESSION AND THE ISMS OF MARGINALIZED GROUPS, SO EVERYONE WILL ALWAYS HAVE THE RIGHT TO BREATHE.

CLASS OF 2020.

I THANK FOR BEING ONE OF THE BEST CLASS I WAS ABLE TO LEAD.

I WANT YOU TO BE THE CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN THE WORLD.

DO NOTHING LESS BECAUSE YOUR FUTURES MATTER.

WHILE THIS DAY IS NOT WHAT WE EXPECTED MY HOPE IS YOU ENJOY YOUR GRADUATION AND YOUR CLASS OF 2020 DOCUMENTARY.

ALSO PLEASE JOIN US TONIGHT IN LIGHTING UP THE CITY BY DISPLAYING RED, WHITE, BLUE LIGHTS AND SHOWING YOUR TITAN PRIDE.

THANK YOU TO ALL OF MY GRADUATES AND THANK YOU TO YOUR FAMILIES AND LOVED ONES FOR SUPPORTING YOU AND FOR SUPPORTING OUR SCHOOL THAT STAND AS A SYMBOL IN OUR CITY WHERE DREAMS COME TO FRUITION.

ONCE A TITAN, ALWAYS A TITAN.

CLASS OF 2020, I MISS YOU AND LOVE YOU ALL.

>> HI, I NOW HAVE THE HONOR AND PRIVILEGE OF ANNOUNCING OUR KEYNOTE SPEAKER, NOAH LYLES.

HE'S A FROUD GRADUATE FROM THE CLASS OF 2016.

HE'S AN ALEXANDRIA SUPERSTAR WHO IS ON THE WORLD STAGE FOR HIS ACCOMPLISH AND HARD WORK IN TRACK AND FIELD, SPECIALIZING IN FRENCH.

WHEN HE WAS AT TC, HE BROKE DECADE OLD HIGH SCHOOL RECORD MAKING HIM THE FASTEST SPRINTER AT THE TIME.

AFTER LEAVING TC, HE CONTINUED TO COMPETE AND RACK UP MORE AND MORE MEDALS.

WHEN HE DECIDED TO GO PRO HE SIGNED A CONTRACT WITH ADIDAS.

HE'S RAN AND CONTINUED PERSONAL BESTS.

WE HAVE ALL BEEN WAITING TO WATCH AND SEE THE OLYMPIC TEAMS COME TOGETHER FOR THE OLYMPICS IN TOKYO THIS SUMMER.

UNFORTUNATELY DUE TO OUR WORLDWIDE PANDEMIC THAT WILL HAVE TO WAIT.

I CAN SAY I'M CONFIDENT THAT WE WILL SEE NOAH ON THE MEDAL PLATFORMS SOON.

IT IS BECAUSE OF HIS TRAILBLAZING AND IN THIS CASE LITERALLY, LIKE NOAH, WE'RE ALL PROUD TO BE TITANS, TITANS, PLEASE GIVE IT UP FOR YOUR COMMENCEMENT SPEAKER NOAH LYLES.

>> CONGRATULATIONS TC WILLIAMS CLASS OF 2020, ALL 898 OF YOU.

I'M NOAH LYLES AND I'M PROUD TO BE YOUR COMMENCEMENT SPEAKER TODAY.

FIRST OFF, DR. HUTCHINS AND MR. BALAZS AND MRS. SANDERS ALLOWING ME TO SPEAK.

YOU MAY THINK, WHO I AM? MORE IMPORTANTLY, JUST FOUR YEARS AGO I WAS A SENIOR AND TO PROVE IT, IS IS HERE IS MY MY CAP.

I DON'T KNOW IF THEY LET YOU COLOR YOUR CAPS BUT THEY LET US.

I WAS JUST LIKE YOU GOING THROUGH THE THE DAYS OF BEING A SENIOR, HAPPY AND EXCITING.

JUST LIKE YOU, I HAD A PATH THAT EVERYBODY SHOULD TAKE GONE TO COLLEGE, GET A DEGREE, GET ON THE SKOPP SHL AND FOR ME TRY TO GO PRO IN TRACK AND FIELD.

I DIDN'T LIKE THAT.

I WANTED TO MAKE A WHOLE NEW PATH.

TO GET THERE, I HAD TO TAKE ANOTHER PATH.

I DECIDED WITH ME AND MY BROTHER THAT I WAS GOING TO GO PRO STRAIGHT OUT OF HIGH SCHOOL.

I WAS GOING TO BE A PROFESSIONAL TRACK AND FIELD ATHLETE RIGHT OUT OF HIGH SCHOOL.

THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT ME AND MY BROTHER DID.

WE BECAME THE FIRST MALE SPRINTERS TO EVER GO PROFESSIONAL STRAIGHT OUT OF HIGH SCHOOL FOR TRACK AND FIELD.

IN THAT TIME, THESE FOUR YEARS, I BECAME THE 300 METER INDOOR WORLD RECORD HOLDER.

THE FASTEST MAN IN THE 200, TWO TIME WORLD CHAMPION AND WON A DECENT AMOUNT OF AWARDS BY DOING IT.

SOME SAME ACCOMPLISHMENTS IS WHAT MAKES YOU.

I CHALLENGE THAT.

IT IS THE JOURNEY THAT REALLY MAKE YOU.

[00:35:02]

WHAT ARE THE THINGS THAT GET YOU THERE? I WOULD SAY IT IS ADVERSITY.

LIKE IN 2020, I BET YOU DIDN'T SEE YOURSELF GRADUATING LIKE THIS, YOU'RE AT HOME, STUCK, CAN'T GO OUTSIDE WITH YOUR CAP AND GOWN ON PROBABLY WITH A FEW OF YOUR FAMILY AND BROTHER AND SISTER AND TAKING MARE PHONE CALLS THAN YOU WANTED TO GIVE.

YOU WANTED TO GIVE MORE HUGS AND HIGH FIVES AND EVERYBODY SEES YOU IN THE AUDITORIUM AND PARTY AND HAVE FUN BECAUSE THIS WAS 12 YEARS THAT YOU SAID I HAVE TO GET MY EDUCATION AND I'M GOING TO CELEBRATE WHEN IT IS ALL FINISHED.

IT IS NOT LIKE THAT.

I HEARD THE CLASS OF 2020 WAS DIFFERENT THAN THE OTHERS.

I HEARD THE CLASS OF 2020 WAS COURAGEOUS AND RELENTLESS.

THEY WERE WILLING TO STAND UP FOR ANYTHING THAT WAS UNHEARD OF THAT WAS BAD.

SEEMS LIKE THEY WERE BORN FOR TIMES LIKE THIS, TIMES LIKE 2020, IN A SPAN OF A FEW MONTHS, WE DEALT WITH WORLD WAR III SCARCE AND KOBE BRYANT'S UNTIMELY DEATH, THE CORONAVIRUS, THE POSTPONEMENT OF THE OLYMPICS, JUST WHEN YOU THOUGHT IT COULDN'T GET WORSE, BEING LOCKED INSIDE YOUR HOUSE, WE'RE DEALING WITH CIVIL INJUSTICE.

LIKE I SAID, THE CLASS OF 2020 IS DIFFERENT.

AS YOU GO OUT IN THE WORLD, I WANT TO SHARE A FUAD VERACITIES, TO MAKE SURE YOU WERE MADE FOR CONFLICT LIKE THIS.

I HAD TO DEAL WITH ADVERSITY.

PEOPLE MAY SAY HE HAD IT GOOD.

HE GETS PAID, ME GETS PAID WILL.

NO ISSUES.

HE'S ALWAYS SMILING.

LIFE NOW AND EVEN BACK THEN WAS DIFFERENT.

IT WAS HARDER.

I WANT TO SHARE A FEW.

THE FIRST ADVERSITY, I WAS BORN WITH ASTHMA.

I'M TALKING SEVERE ASTHMA.

IMAGINE THAT.

THE FOURTH FASTEST MAN EVER TO LIVE, BETTER THAN WITH ASTHMA.

THAT MEANS THAT IT WAS VERY HARD FOR ME TO BREATHE AND NOT ONLY THAT I WOULD HAVE ATTACKS ON MY BODY WHERE I COULDN'T BREATHE IN AIR.

IT WAS COMPARED TO TRYING TO BREATHE OUT OF A STRAW.

I DON'T KNOW IF YOU EVER TRIED TO BREATHE OUT OF A STRAW, IT IS VERY HARD.

WE ALREADY THINK HE WON'T MAY SPORTS.

HE DOESN'T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT THAT.

I REMEMBER MY MOM TELLING ME IT IS DAYS LIKE THIS THAT YOU PROBABLY THINK NOTHING IS GOING IT CHANGE.

THIS IS GOING TO STAY THE SAME FOREVER.

IT WON'T.

IN THE FUTURE YOU'LL BE ABLE TO LOOK BACK AT MOMENTS LIKE THIS AND THINK, WOW, I DIDN'T EVEN REMEMBER THAT.

IT WAS SUCH A DISTANT MEMORY.

YOU CAN GO ON AND SAY THAT WAS A TIME I OVERCAME THE HARD PART IN MY LIFE.

ANOTHER ADVERSITY WAS BULLYING.

I'M NOT TALKING ABOUT GOING OUTSIDE AFTER 3 P.M.

AND MEET ME THERE, I'M GOING TO FIGHT YOU, YOU GOING TO FIGHT ME.

I WAS ACTUALLY BULLIED BY A FEMALE.

NO WAY.

HE'S TOO CONFIDENT.

THE WAY THAT HE PRESENTS HIMSELF IS TOO OVERBEARING.

IT IS WAY TOO MUCH CONFIDENCE IN THE WAY HE WALKS AND TALKS, NO WAY HE WAS BULLIED AS A CHILD.

I WAS BULLIED.

THEY PLAY WITH YOUR MIND.

FEMALES DON'T BULLY LIKE MALES.

THEY GET IN YOUR MIND AND MAKE YOU THINK HORRIBLE THINGS.

IT WAS ANOTHER THING I WAS DETERMINED TO NOT LET STOP ME.

EVEN WHEN I THOUGHT I WAS DONE WITH THE FEMALES, I HAD TO MOVE ON TO THE TEACHERS.

I WAS BULLIED BY TEACHERS, BECAUSE SOME PEOPLE BELIEVE ATHLETES GET TOO MUCH RECOGNITION AND THEY BELIEVE YOU SHOULD NOT GO ON AN EASY PATH BECAUSE YOU'RE AN ATHLETE.

JUST BECAUSE YOU'RE AN ATHLETE DOESN'T MEAN WE DON'T WORK HARD AND WE FEEL.

THAT'S BULLYING AND INJUSTICE BECAUSE OF THE WAY PEOPLE ARE TREATED AS IF THEY'RE IN THE THE SAME COLOR AS YOU.

[00:40:30]

ANOTHER FORM OF BULLYING.

ANOTHER ADVERSITY I HAD TO GO THROUGH WAS MY ADD.

IT STANDS FOR ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER, THAT MEANS I HAVE A VERY ACTIVE IMAGINATION AND VERY ACTIVE BRAIN PROCESSING, DIFFERENT THAN OTHERS.

IT MOVES VERY FAST.

MY ATTENTION IS SWAYED DIFFERENT WAYS VERY QUICKLY.

IT COULD BE HARD TO FOCUS ON ONE THING BUT IT IS POSSIBLE TO FOCUS ON ONE THING.

THAT DIDN'T MAKE IT EASIER FOR ME.

FOR THOSE THAT USUALLY HEAR THAT SAY, PUT HIM ON RITALIN.

IT IS A MEDICATION THAT A LOT OF KIDS WILL DEAL WITH WHO HAVE ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER.

LET ME TELL YOU WHAT IT DOES.

IT FIRST CALMS YOU DOWN SO YOU'RE NOT AS ENERGETIC.

YOU'RE SEEN AS DULL IN YOUR MIND, YOU'RE VERY ONE DIMENSIONAL.

YOU HAVE ONE TRAIN OF THOUGHT.

YOUR HUNGER, TAKEN AWAY.

IN THIS TIME PERIOD WHEN YOU'RE ON THIS MEDICATION, YOU SEE VERY NORMAL AND AND PROBABLY FSH AROUND YOU IS COMPLAINING, HE'S SO WELL BEHAVED NOW.

HE'S SO SIMPLEMINDED, HE'S DOING THE WORK EXACTLY HOW I WANT IT, NOT SAYING A WORD, IN THE SAYING ANYTHING.

I DON'T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT HIM BOUNCING OFF THE WALLS.

ALL OF THAT WAS MY CHARACTER.

ALL OF THAT WAS THE ENERGY THAT I HAD FOR ENJOYING LIFE.

NOW WHEN YOU WANT ME TO SAY SOMETHING AND YOU'RE WORRIED THAT YOUR CHILD MAY NOT BE FEELING GOOD, THAT THEY MAY BE SAD OR DEPRESSED INSIDE, ALL YOU'RE GOING TO GET WHILE THAT CHILD IS ON THIS MEDICATION IS, I FEEL OKAY.

A BLANK STARE OF I FEEL OKAY.

NOW YOU'RE WONDERING IF HE'S IN THERE.

I DON'T WANT THAT TO BE FOR ME.

I DECIDED TO GET OFF THE MEDICATION AND LEARN HOW TO BALANCE MY ENERGETIC SELF WITH MY SELF CONTROL, BECAUSE I DID NOT WANT TO BE ANOTHER CHILD WHO JUST GOES THROUGH THE MOTIONS.

I WANTED TO CREATE MY OWN DESTINY.

MY LAST ADVERSITY, I WANTED TO TALK ABOUT IS MY DYSLEXIA.

A HOT OF YOU MAY KNOW THAT IF YOU LOOK AT MY SOCIAL MEDIA, I HAVE QUITE A FEW MISSPELLINGS AND IT DEFINITELY BRINGS ON BULLYING.

AND MOST PEOPLE WOULD THINK, AGAIN, NOAH IS TOO POPULAR.

HE'S GOT FOLLOWERS AND YOU SEE ON TV EVERY DAY, NO WAY THIS GUY COULD BE BULLIED.

IMAGINE YOU WANT TO POST SOMETHING AND YOU WANT TO GIVE SOMEBODY A SHOUT OUT, BUT YOU SAY SOMETHING WRONG IN THE SHOUT OUT, AND THEN YOU SEE FIVE, SIX, TEN, COMMENTS SAYING YOU SPELLED THAT WRONG.

WHAT IS THE MATTER WITH YOU, YOU DON'T KNOW HOW TO SPELL.

YOU GET PEOPLE GETTING AWAY WITHOUT SPELLING THINGS CORRECTLY.

I TELL THEM WHAT I TELL MY FRIENDS.

IF I KNOW HOW TO SPELL IT CORRECTLY.

MY BRAIN WON'T LET ME.

MY BRAIN WILL TELL MY EYES THAT THIS WITH A Z IS ACTUALLY WITH AN S AT THE END, EVEN THOUGH I CHECK IT, MY BRAIN TELLS MY EYES, YOU DID A GOOD JOB AND I POST IT.

AND PEOPLE DON'T UNDERSTAND THE POSSIBILITY THAT YOUR BRAIN CAN WORK THAT WAY.

IT IS NOT SOMETHING I CAN CHANGE.

I HAVE COME TO PEACE KNOWING MY BRAIN WORKS THAT WAY AND I HAVE TO COME TO PEACE KNOWING THAT PEOPLE AREN'T GOING TO UNDERSTAND THAT.

BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN I WON'T TRY TO FIGHT FOR EQUALITY JUST LIKE THE WAY I THINK.

THERE ARE PEOPLE OVER IN THE WORLD BEING RIDICULED JUST BECAUSE THEIR EYES ARE A DIFFERENT COLOR.

IMAGINE THAT.

THIS IS THE ADVERSITIES YOU LIVE WITH IN THE WORLD.

[00:45:03]

I'M IN THE SAYING THIS TO SCARE YOU.

I'M IN THE SAYING THIS TO SCARE YOU.

I WANT YOU TO BE STRONG AND MAKE IT THROUGH IT.

FROM EVERYTHING I TOLD YOU TODAY, YOU WOULD THINK THIS IS NO WAY THAT THIS NOAH LYLES THAT IS SPEAKING WITH YOU TODAY COULD BE HERE AT THIS MOMENT.

THERE'S IN WAY THIS GUY WITH A ONE TRACK MIND COULD BE GIVING A SPEECH.

THERE'S NO WAY THAT SOMEONE WHEN HAS SUFFERED SO MUCH THROUGH BULLYING COULD EVEN GET UP THE COURAGE TO COME UP AND GIVE A SPEECH TODAY AND THAT THIS GUY COULD BE OUT THIS RUNNING AND BE HAPPY AT THE SAME TIME.

THERE'S NO WAY.

BUT FACING THOSE ADVERSITIES ARE WHAT GOT ME HERE TODAY.

I ASK YOU, CLASS OF 2020, DURING THESE TIMES OF ADVERSITY, WHAT WILL BE YOUR LEGACY AND PEOPLE REMEMBER YOU FOR? WHAT WILL YOU WANT TO SPEAK UP FOR? CIVIL RIGHTS? GOING OUT AND SAYING WE ALL NEED THE SAME TREATMENT AND WE'RE ALL EQUAL.

WILL IT BE THAT YOU WANT TO STOP BULLYING, THAT YOU WANT TO GONE SAY THAT JUST BECAUSE SOMEONE IS A LITTLE DIFFERENT, WE NEED TO RIDICULE THEM.

WILL YOU STAND UP FOR INEQUALITY IN HOMOPHOBIAS AND THEY HAVE A DIFFERENT WAY OF LOVE THAN ME IS WRONG.

WHEN YOU STAND UP TO CURE CANCER BECAUSE YOU BELIEVE EVERYBODY SHOULD HAVE A RIGHT TO CLEAN HEALTH, THAT EVERYBODY SHOULD BE SAVED, NO MATTER WHO THEY ARE? WILL YOU STOP GLOBAL WARMING BECAUSE YOU BELIEVE EVERYBODY SHOULD BE ABLE TO EXPERIENCE IN BEAUTIFUL EARTH THAT WE ARE LIVING ON? AND YOU WANT TO SEE IT LAST LONGER SO WE CAN MAKE IT BETTER EACH DAY THAT WE GO ON.

WHATEVER YOU CHOOSE, STAND STRONG BECAUSE THERE WILL BE ADVERSITY THROUGHOUT YOUR WHOLE LIFE.

YOU NEED TO KNOW THAT YOU CAN MAKE IT THROUGH BECAUSE JUST THIS TIME PERIOD OF 2020 WILL NOT BE YOUR LAST AND YOU CAN MAKE IT THROUGH THE NEXT ONE AND THE NEXT ONE AND THE ONE AFTER THAT.

YOU'LL LOOK BACK ON TIMES OF 2020 AND SAY I GOT THROUGH THAT.

I CAME OUT STRONGER THAN EVER.

CLASS OF 2020, I CHALLENGE YOU TO MAKE THEM ALWAYS REMEMBER THE TITANS, AND GOD BLESS.

>> DREAM GOALS AND ASPIRATIONS, EITHER FOR OURSELVES OR THOSE AROUND US.

FOR ME, MY HOPE IS TO MAKE A LASTING IMPACT, WHETHER IT BE ONE PERSON OR THOUSANDS.

I WANT TO BE A SPARKLE, THAT GLIMMER OF LIGHT THAT INCLUDES TODAY.

HOPE.

>> I WANT TAKE CARE OF A BRIGHT FUTURE FOR MYSELF AND MY FAMILY.

>> I HOPE TO DO THINGS FOR MY PEOPLE.

I WANT TO MAKE A CHANGE.

>> I HOPE THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE IN 50 YEARS.

>> WHILE PRACTICING PEACE, LOVE, KINDNESS TOWARD ONE ANOTHER.

>> I HOPE EVERYONE GETS ALONG AND LIVES IN PEACE.

>> SOCIETY NOT BE SO COLD TO EACH OTHER.

>> OVERCOME OBSTACLES.

>> WATCH THE WORLD EVOLVE INTO A PLACE WHERE WE'RE NO LONGER JUDGMENTAL AND EVERYONE IS ALLOWED TO EXPRESS HOW THEY FEEL AND BE WHO THEY ARE IN A SAFE ENVIRONMENT.

>> I HOPE FOR WORLD PEACE LIKE RACISM, RESPECT EACH OTHER.

>> THAT WE CAN ALL GET ALONG AND THAT WE CAN HAVE BETTER SAFER COMMUNITIES FOR OUR FUTURE GENERATIONS.

>> PEOPLE ARE NO LONGER MARGINALIZED.

>> THAT THE WORLD IS PROGRESSING.

IT IS MOVING TOWARDS JUSTICE AND INEQUALITY RATHER THAN AWAY FROM IT.

>> BETTER FUTURE FOR THE WORLD IN GENERAL.

>> I HOPE FOR THE HEALING PROCESS OF PEOPLE.

>> WANT TO GIVE BACK TO THOSE THAT HELPED ME ALONG THE WAY.

>> WHATEVER VERSION OF MYSELF.

>> HELP BETTER PEOPLE'S LIVES.

>> CHANGE IS THE FUTURE.

>> I HOPE FOR CHANGE.

>> THAT WE ALL GET TO DO EVERYTHING WE DO IN THE FUTURE.

>> I HOPE FOR A FUTURE THAT IS BETTER THAN IT LOOKS LIKE IN FITTING IN THIS WORK RIGHT NOW.

>> I HOPE EVERYONE STAYS SAFE AND HEALTHY DURING TIMES LIKE THESE.

>> I HOPE TO BE SAFE AND HEALTHY.

[00:50:02]

>> GOING TO BE OKAY.

AND BE POSITIVE AND STAY STRONG.

>> THE PAST OF LIST, THE FUTURE IS A MYSTERY FOR THE PERSON IS A GIFT.

THAT'S WHAT IT IS CALLED.

LIVE YOUR LIFE THE WAY YOU WANT.

ENJOY IT.

BECAUSE TODAY WE ARE, TOMORROW WE DON'T KNOW.

>> GO TITANS, GO TITANS.

>> AT THIS TIME WILL THE CLASS OF 2020 PLEASE STAND.

BY VIRTUE OF THE AUTHORITY VESTED IN ME AS PRINCIPAL OF THE HIGH SCHOOL AND THE GOVERNING REGULATIONS UNDER VIRGINIA STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION AND THE SCHOOL BOARD, I HERE BY CONFIRM THAT THE SENIORS OF CLASS OF 2020 WHO HAVE BEEN PRESENTED TO ME ARE NOW GRADUATES.

CONGRATULATIONS.

>> I'M CLASS OF 2020 VICE PRESIDENT.

I WILL GO TO COLLEGE FOR BUSINESS MANAGEMENT.

ONCE A TITAN ALWAYS A TITAN.

>> I'LL ATTEND UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA SCHOOL OF ARTS.

>> VIRGINIA STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> TEXAS CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY AND MAJORING IN FILM AND TELEVISION.

>> AFTER HIGH SCHOOL I'LL ATTEND GEORGE MACE ENUNIVERSITY TO MAJOR IN FILM AND MINOR IN GRAPHIC DESIGN.

>> I'M ROSEY FISHER I'LL MAJOR IN TEXTILE INITIALLING.

>> ATTENDING VIRGINIA COMMONWEALTH UNIVERSITY AND STUDYING MUSIC EDUCATION.

>> I'M GOING TO VIRGINIA TECH TO STUDY MULTIMEDIA.

>> THIS FALL I'M HOPING TO TRAVEL THROUGH PERU ANDER ABOUT LIVE WHY, AND THEN HEADED TO STUDY BUSINESS.

>> MY NAME IS CORTLAND DORRI AND I'LL ATTEND

>> VIRGINIA TECH THIS FALL.

>> A GAP YEAR.

>> SOCIAL WORK.

>> THE SCHOOL OF WILLIAM AND MARY.

>> I'M GOING TO NOVA.

>> OLD DOMINION UNIVERSITY AND MAJOR IN EXERCISE SCIENCE.

>> I'M ENLISTING IN THE NAVY.

>> NORTHERN VIRGINIA COMMUNITY COLLEGE.

>> UNIVERSITY OF ROCHESTER.

>> STUDY FILM.

>> PURDUE UNIVERSITY.

>> UNITED STATES NAVAL ACADEMY.

>> COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY.

>> MIAMI UNIVERSITY STUDYING MEDIA.

>> I CHOSE MY COUNTRY, EQUADOR.

GOING TO LAW SCHOOL.

>> CRIMINOLOGY AT GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY.

>> BIOCHEMISTRY AND ECONOMICS.

>> >> RICHARD BLAND THE COLLEGE OF WILLIAM AND MARY.

>> VIRGINIA COMMONWEALTH UNIVERSITY IN THE FALL.

NURSING.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> JANIL, COLLEGE OF WILLIAM AND MARY NEXT YEAR AND UNDECIDED ABOUT WHAT I WANT TO MAJOR IN.

>> CRIMINOLOGY AT WILLIAM AND MARY.

>> SAVANNAH ART AND DESIGN.

>> KENTUCKY STATE UNIVERSITY MAJOR IN BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION.

>> RADFORD UNIVERSITY MAJOR IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE.

>> I'LL BE ATTENDING SHEPHERD UNIVERSITY.

>> ATTENDING COLLEGE OF WILLIAM AND MARY.

>> ATTENDING JMU, GO DUKES.

>> VIRGINIA MILITARY INSTITUTE, STUDY CIVIL ENGINEERING.

>> EWAN THOMPSON AND ATTENDING THE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA.

>> GOING TO ATTEND CHRISTOPHER NEWPORT UNIVERSITY.

>> VOORHEES COLLEGE AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE.

>> DAVIDSON COLLEGE.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> VIRGINIA TECH.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> VIRGINIA TECH.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> VIRGINIA STATE UNIVERSITY, MASS COMMUNICATIONS.

>> NORFOLK STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> VIRGINIA STATE UNIVERSITY.

NORTHERN VIRGINIA COMMUNITY COLLEGE.

>> GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY.

CREATIVE WRITING OR COMMUNICATIONS.

>> PRATT INSTITUTE.

>> BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY.

>> DILLARD UNIVERSITY.

>> VCU.

>> UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN MADISON.

COMPUTER SCIENCE.

>> VCU.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> JAMES MADISON UNIVERSITY.

>> CLEMSON.

>> NORTHERN VIRGINIA CC.

>> PLAYER MONT.

>> JAMES MADISON UNIVERSITY.

>> STANFORD UNIVERSITY.

>> BOWIE STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> ELON UNIVERSITY.

>> UNIVERSITY OF MARY WASHINGTON.

>> UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN.

>> PRINCETON UNIVERSITY.

>> PRINCE GEORGE'S COMMUNITY COLLEGE.

>> VIRGINIA TECH.

>> GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY.

GRAPHIC DESIGN.

>> UNIVERSITY OF RHODE ISLAND.

>> QUEEN'S UNIVERSITY.

>> VIRGINIA TECH.

>> TENNESSEE STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

ROCHESTER INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY, BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING.

>> DREXEL UNIVERSITY.

INTERIOR DESIGN.

>> VIRGINIA STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> VIRGINIA STATE UNIVERSITY.

CHILD PSYCHOLOGY.

>> AIR FORCE.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> VCU.

>> OLD DOMINION UNIVERSITY.

>> GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY.

>> NORFOLK STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO.

>> UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA.

>> GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY.

>> VIRGINIA TECH.

>> VIRGINIA STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY.

>> VIRGINIA TECH.

>> NORFOLK STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

>> VIRGINIA TECH.

>> UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA.

ECONOMICS.

>> NORFOLK STATE UNIVERSITY.

>> SHENANDOAH UNIVERSITY.

ONCE A TITAN, ALWAYS A TITAN.

>> WE ARE THE TITANS, MIGHTY MIGHTY TITANS.

>> WE HAVE SO MANY UNCERTAINTIES IN REGARDS TO THE REOPENING OF SCHOOLS, WE'RE ALL GOING TO HAVE TO BE VERY FLEXIBLE.

WE CANNOT JUST HAVE ONE PLAN OR ONE SCENARIO THAT WE'RE GOING TO SEND TO THE COMMUNITY AND SAY, THIS IS WHAT WE'RE GOING TO DO.

WE HAVE TO BE VERY EXPLICIT.

YOU AS FAMILIES WILL THINK ABOUT DIFFERENT SCENARIOS.

ONE IS A TRADITIONAL OPENING WHICH PROBABLY WON'T HAPPEN.

WE WANT IT SHARE WHAT THE TRADITIONAL LOOKS LIKE.

HYBRID APPROACH.

THAT MEANS, SOME ONLINE AND SOME IN PERSON INSTRUCTION.

WE'RE GOING TO WORK THROUGH WHAT THAT HYBRID APPROACH LOOKS LIKE, WHETHER WE HAVE 50 PERCENT OF STUDENTS IN OUR SCHOOLS AT ONE TIME OR 25 PERCENT OF STUDENTS IN OUR SCHOOLS AT ONE TIME.

WE HAVE TO LOOK AT APPROACHES CONTINUING TO HAVE THE ONLINE LEARNING IF

[00:55:02]

WE'RE UNABLE TO HAVE EVERYONE BACK IN OUR SCHOOLS IN THE FALL.

THOSE ARE THE THREE MAIN APPROACHES THAT WE'RE GOING TO BE ANALYZING AND WE'RE DEVELOPING MODELS THAT THAT RELATE TO THESE DIFFERENT PURCHASES AND THAT'S WHAT WE'RE GOING TO BE SHARING WITH OUR COMMUNITY AS WELL AS SHARING WITH THE BOARD.

WE HAVE TO THINK THROUGH SO MANY COMPLICATIONS FROM TRANSPORTATION TO TO HAVE HOW DO YOU HAVE STUDENTS IN CLASSROOMS. HOW DO YOU PASS IN THE HALLWAYS AND BATHROOM PASSES AND THINGS OF ALL OF THAT NATURE, THAT NATURE, EXCUSE ME, THAT WE WILL CONTINUE TO WORK THROUGH.

THOSE ARE THE QUESTIONS THAT WE WILL BE ANSWERING WITH WITH OUR COMMUNITY AND WE HOPE THAT YOU WILL CONTINUE IT STAY ENGAGED IN OUR REOPENING PLAN, ON OUR REOPENING PLAN WEB PAGE.

WE POST A LOT OF INFORMATION THERE THROUGH THE PROCESS.

YOUR INPUT IS VERY IMPORTANT.

AT TIMES LIKE THIS, WE WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE HAVE KEY EXPERTS AT THE TABLE SO THAT THEY'RE GIVING US INSIGHT ABOUT WELLNESS AND HEALTH AND SAFETY AND SECURITY AND FACILITIES AND OPERATIONS AND CLEANING, AS WELL AS THE EDUCATIONAL EXPERTS TALKING THROUGH HOW DO WE CONTINUE TO TEACH AND LEARN DURING THIS GLOBAL PANDEMIC.

THERE'S REMARKABLE FACETS OF THIS WORK.

CHECK OUT OUR WEB PAGE AND YOU WILL BE ABLE TO GET MORE INFORMATION.

NEXT WEEK WE'RE GOING IT SHARE SPECIFIC DETAILS WITH YOU.

I WANTED TO FOCUS ON THIS TODAY.

I KNOW THERE'S A LOT OF QUESTIONS ABOUT ABOUT REOPENING OUR SCHOOLS.

MARE DETAILS ARE COMING AND WE ARE WORKING WITH THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, AS WELL AS WELL AS WITH ALL OF OUR REGIONAL SCHOOL DIVISIONS IN THIS AREA TO WORK THROUGH DEVELOPING THIS.

MAINLY WE'RE WORKING WITH OUR THOUGHT PARTNERS THAT ARE KEY EXPERTS HELPING US AND GUIDING US THROUGH THIS PROCESS.

FINALLY, I WANT TO SAY PLEASE TUNE IN THIS SATURDAY, JUNE 13TH, 9:30 A.M.

FOR OUR OUR VERY FIRST VIRTUAL GRADUATION.

WE ARE GOING TO BE SENDING OFF OUR CLASS OF 2020 IN STYLE AND INNOVATION AND CREATIVITY.

THIS IS GOING TO BE TO BE A WONDERFUL EVENT.

IT IS DEFINITELY NOT WHAT WE HAD THOUGHT WE WOULD BE DOING FOR THE CLASS OF 2020, HAVING A VIRTUAL GRADUATION, BUT I MUST SAY MR. BALLESS AND THE PLANNING TEAM HAS DONE A PHENOMENAL JOB OF PUTTING THIS TOGETHER.

OUR COMMUNICATIONS TEAM HAS ALSO DONE A PHENOMENAL JOB OF TAKING THESE PIECES AND IDEAS AND CREATIVITY AND MAKING IT A WONDERFUL VIRTUAL GRADUATION.

YOU'RE IN FOR A TREAT.

PLEASE TUNE IN.

IF YOU'RE UNABLE TO WATCH IT LIVE, YOU WILL BE ABLE TO WATCH WATCH SEVERAL

[01:00:01]

RECORDINGS.

IT WILL BE ON TV AND THE INTERNET.

SO YOU'LL BE ON FACEBOOK, WHEREVER YOU WANT TO FIND IT, YOU WILL BE ABLE TO FIND OUR GRADUATION AS WE SALUTE THE CLASS OF 2020.

I WANT TO END BY SAYING, STAY SAFE, STAY HEALTHY.

PLEASE CONTINUE TO STAY INFORMED.

WE SO APPRECIATE EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU IN ALL THAT YOU ALL DO EVERY SINGLE DAY ON BEHALF OF OUR YOUNG PEOPLE AND FAMILIES THAT ARE HOME WITH THEIR KID DURING THESE TIMES.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR PATIENCE.

THANK YOU IF YOUR DEDICATION.

I LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING ALL OF YOU REALLY SOON.

ENJOY THE REST OF YOUR DAY.

* This transcript was compiled from uncorrected Closed Captioning.