The Donaldsonville High School Class of 2020’s smiling faces graced the school’s Facebook timeline for several days.

Not only was the campaign a way to showcase the graduating seniors, it also served as a way to encourage students in the other classes. 

Kay’sha Victor, who plans on attending Southern University to study nursing, was among the seniors to offer advice to the underclassmen.

“You're in control of your life, so it’s up to you to take the wheel and go down the path that’s best for you. Don't be afraid to fail; be afraid of not trying,” Victor wrote. 

Jordan Washington, who plans to study law and eventually move  to Texas, also offered words of encouragement.

“My advice to underclassmen is to always follow your dreams and to never give up on them,” he wrote. “There will be days when you feel like you’re not going to achieve your goal, but you have to learn to keep moving forward through it all.”

Many of the students said their favorite high school memory was homecoming week festivities. Every year, the school’s alumni have been gathering together for a week-long celebration. During that time, former students raise money to support the school.

Donaldsonville High’s Library Media Specialist and Virtual School Coordinator Kim Guidry said the idea to highlight the senior class via social media was modeled after similar tributes at other schools.

“Over spring break, I began to see similar posts on my high school alma mater’s Facebook page,” Guidry said. On the morning of April 14th, I emailed our principal, Mr. Marvin Evans, to ask if we could recognize our seniors in the same fashion, and he responded favorably to my request.”

After creating a flyer to call-out for submissions, the students responded enthusiastically with photos and information to go along with their posts. The seniors also provided valuable insights to the school’s younger students.

“I would have to attribute the seniors’ positive and encouraging words to the close-knit community that we have at DHS. We are a small school, so our students all know their peers and are invested in one another. The seniors genuinely care about the success of their underclassmen and realize how quickly everything has changed,” Guidry said.

As the coronavirus crisis continues through a time of year when seniors would be in the home stretch, graduation celebration plans remain up in the air.

“A month and a half ago, we were amazed that graduation was almost upon us,” Guidry said. “Today, we aren’t sure when graduation will occur. Even amidst that uncertainty, our students know we will honor them and celebrate their success.”