This month, Tri-City News asked high school valedictorians in Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody to describe what it's like to graduate in the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic — and without an official ceremony.
Here's what Nava Karimi of Heritage Woods Secondary wrote:
"Grade 12 is a year all students look forward to, transitioning to the next phase of life.
"Going through it during the pandemic has been an interesting experience, to say the least.
"We’ve all had to learn to be flexible, to adjust as conditions change, and, most importantly, to accept that certain things are outside of our control.
"We may have lost things like the grad dinner-dance, but it’s still up to us to make the most of our last year here.
"Graduating is something we’ve all imagined before, so it has definitely been a little disappointing to realize we’ll be doing it without an official ceremony, but people like the administrators and parents are working tirelessly to ensure we have the best experience that we can, all things considered.
"We’re all trying to make this year as great as we can, and we’re excited for what the future holds."