There is an endless list of words and adjectives, yet nothing can describe just how robbed we all are of experiencing over a year of “new” normalcy— a year that could have been full of classroom shenanigans, after-school hangouts, and university-wide activities that all contributed to the life and color of Silliman University. As you submitted your last requirement at your desk at home with only a click of a button, perhaps you looked back on the past school year, the breakdowns and hardships, or maybe you just went and took a nap. Regardless of what you’ve done after completing your course, there are things that are worth celebrating and are worth dedicating to.
This tribute is dedicated to:
The lost opportunities to make memories on campus. Throughout the whole year, we were all itching to go back to face-to-face classes, for things to go back to normal. When asked why, the common answer would be life on campus. To see the diverse batch of students around campus, walk from classroom to classroom, and smile at your friends from down the hallway; all of this, we miss. We were able to make do with the situation, and still made memories over class and late-night study sessions over video calls with our classmates. Though difficult, we were still able to connect with each other, but nothing beats the bonds made on campus.
The tears shed in silence and breakdowns dealt alone. This school year was anything but easy. Each of us has a story to tell of our hardships during this experimental year of online distance learning. We all had difficulty in navigating our way through this new modality and without the support from your peers makes it even harder. There were definitely times where we struggled with finishing our tasks, especially in a difficult subject with even more difficult groupmates.Yet you are still here, and for that you should be proud of yourself.
You, for choosing to show up every single day. We were all faced with moments where we wanted to give up, to take a break next semester. But your dedication and strength deserves to be applauded, because you are standing here today, showing how you pushed through all of the difficult times, even if it seemed impossible.
You are a testimony of pure strength in the midst of uncertainty and adversity. Your struggles this year have not gone in vain, as you reap what you have planted this school year. As you leave the halls of Silliman, congratulate yourself and others for making it this far, because giving your best everyday is the most admirable thing you could do.