The John Burroughs High School Class of 2020 celebrated their graduation on Thursday evening, May 21, with a culminating graduation program viewable online starting at 6:00 p.m.
The virtual graduation capped a week of honor and recognition for 564 seniors, including a ceremony for Senior Awards, Top of the Tribe and Department Awards, a Senior Slideshow, as well as pre-determined times for seniors to safely pick up yearbooks, awards and gifts at the school.
All over town, houses festooned with red and white balloons, decorations and lawn signs have been popping up to recognize the Class of 2020’s graduation. Many graduating students and their families have been decorating their cars as well with the school colors of red and white.
The JBHS Vocal Music Association held a parade of cars for graduating seniors on Wednesday, May 20. Graduates drove around town, passing more than 30 choir members’ homes from which supporters cheered and waived signs.
Graduating seniors also took part in a final car parade around the high school on Thursday afternoon. Many students and their families turned out in decorated cars and drove around the school perimeter.
The two hour long virtual graduation ceremony included some special shout outs, along with student and District administration speakers.
Four student speakers – Valedictorians Tigran Saakyan and Donovan Sylla, Salutatorian Orla Giffen and ASB President Maddie Medina – recorded their speeches for the virtual graduation ahead of time. Burroughs Principal Deborah Madrigal also spoke.
“The virtual graduation will consist of almost all of the same activities that our regular graduation had except the receiving of the diploma case,” explained Madrigal. “Each senior had the option to record a 10 second video, where they get to say something and they move their tassel from the right to the left. Students who did not want to submit a video will have their senior picture instead.”
“The seniors voted on who they wanted to read their names and I think we have 13 different teachers reading the students names,” she added.
The JBHS virtual graduation video was recorded in segments following safety and social distancing guidelines. Those recordings, plus the students’ submitted personal videos, were edited and assembled by local Burbank post-production house MOcean, which has long been a supporter of Burbank Unified arts programs.
“Congratulations to the Class of 2020!” Madrigal said in an email sent home to Burroughs families. “We wish you all the best!”
“A huge THANK YOU to MOCEAN for creating this wonderful moment for all of our seniors,” she added. “They worked very hard and very quickly to get this ready for you today. We are so grateful to their whole team!”