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Grad looks different for the class of 2020. Here’s what B.C. valedictorians have to say

COVID-19 crisis creating anxiety among Canadian teens.
COVID-19 crisis creating anxiety among Canadian teens. Getty Images

High school graduation looks very different for the class of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

With all the changes — and the anxiety that has come with them — AM980 CKNW wants to acknowledge the hardworking valedictorians across the province, knowing they will likely not be participating in a traditional graduation ceremony.

READ MORE: ‘I don’t wake up excited’: Canadian high school grads cope with possibly axed ceremonies

AM980 CKNW is giving a select number of valedictorians a chance to read the speeches they would have given at their grad ceremony on our airwaves instead.

Each weekday morning in June, a recorded speech from a valedictorian will air on CKNW’s Mornings with Simi.

We will also post all speeches on this web page as they air so you can listen any time.

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Elizabeth Chung – Burnaby North Secondary

After graduation, Chung will attend UBC’s Sauder School of Business. She plans on going into business with a focus on sustainability. Her favourite subjects in school were humanities and English. She wants to give a special shout-out to the Burnaby North administration, Ms. Minic, and her whole family.

Deora Dias – Delview Secondary School

After graduation, Deora plans to attend SFU for microbiology and biochemistry. She hopes to pursue a career in pharmacy. Her favourite subjects in school were biology and art. She wants to give a special shout out to her friends and family, especially her mom!

Jason Liao – Gleneagle Secondary School

After graduation, Jason plans to attend business school at either SFU or UBC. And he hopes to pursue a career in either law or as an entrepreneur. His favourite subject in school was economics. He wants to give a special shout out to his mom and dad!

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READ MORE: Coronavirus: Students in Sooke, B.C., to get in-person grad ceremony, but parents not allowed

Luna Kim – Westview Secondary School

After graduation, Luna plans to major in the Life Science Program at the University of Toronto. She would like to pursue a career in teaching. Her favourite subject in school was biology. She wants to give a special shout out to her “second family” (her homestay family), as well as her friends and her teachers who supported her.

Bryce Dong – Langley Fine Arts School

After graduation, Bryce will attend UBC; thereafter he plans to pursue a career in music performance and education. His favourite subject in school was Physical Education. He wants to give a special shout out to his parents for always supporting him in his endeavours.

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Simon Auclair – St. Patrick Secondary School

After graduation, Simon will attend UBC where he plans to major in acting and would like to pursue UBC’s nursing program. His favourite subjects in school were English and any food courses – mostly for the mac n’ cheese they’d make in class. He wants to give a special shout out to his accomplished classmates, his supportive parents, and his girlfriend.

Deborah Wang and Maya Beninteso – Burnaby Mountain Secondary School

After graduation, Deborah plans on going to SFU to pursue a career in Computer Science; Maya plans on taking psychology at SFU to become a Clinical Psychologist. Deborah wants to give a special shout out to her fellow grads of 2020. She says “you did it! Even though it felt like graduation wouldn’t be possible with everything going on this year.” And Maya wants to give a special shout out to her mom for her continued support.

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Grace Robinson – George Elliot Secondary

After graduation, Grace plans to attend UBCO with the goal of pursuing a career in project management. Her favourite subject in school was English. Grace would like to give a special shout out to Mrs. Davidson “our superhuman grad sponsor.”

Jaden Gauw and Amirali Ghanbari – Ecolé Alpha Secondary

These two friends shared the same favourite subject in school: chemistry. After graduation, they plan to attend post-secondary school and pursue a YouTube channel! They hope to work in engineering – one as a software engineer and the other as a civil engineer. They’d like to give a shout-out to their families: Minoo, Hamid, Ivana, Elco, and Daniella.

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Gabrielle Wong – R.E. Mountain Secondary

After graduation, she plans to attend SFU to major in Human Geography with a minor in Social Data Analytics. Gabrielle hopes to pursue a career in research, policy-making and/or teaching. What was her favourite subject in school? She says…all of them! But she really enjoyed geography. Gabrielle would like to give a special shout out to her parents and teachers for their constant support.

Claire Chou – University Hill Secondary

After graduation, she plans to attend UC Berkeley. Good luck, Claire!

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Tatiana Hochstetter – Sardis Secondary School

After graduation, Tatiana wants to attend UBC with the goal of one day becoming a school principal. Her favourite subject is math.

Esmé Decker – Gladstone Secondary School

Esmé plans to attend UBC’s Arts One program and hopes to pursue a career in writing, publishing and editing. She would like to give a shout-out to her parents, teachers and best friends for always supporting me.

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Meghan Jones – Samuel Robertson Technical Secondary

After graduation, Meghan plans to attend UVIC for a Bachelor of Arts with a double major in History and Linguistics. She hopes to pursue a career as a teacher. Her favourite subject in school was History. She wants to give a special shout out to Ms. Walton, the BSS, and her incredible family!

Christina McDonald – Matthew McNair Secondary

In the fall, Christina is attending Simon Fraser University and hopes to pursue a career in business. Her favourite subject in school was acting as it allowed her and many others to express themselves and learn many skills, such as lighting and sound editing, that many students do not get to do. She wants to thank all of the teachers involved in helping create her speech, specifically Mr. Soriano, Mr. Lui, and Ms. Mar. She also wants to thank her parents.

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Eric Militaru – Port Moody Secondary

Eric will be attending SFU in the fall to undertake a degree in communications. He hopes to pursue a career in radio or TV entertainment.

Elliot Evans – HJ Cambie Secondary

After graduation, Elliot plans to go to UBC and hopes to pursue a career in marine biology – he says that field has been a passion for him since he was young. In school, his favourite subject was calculus and he wants to give a special shout out to the Plan B Podcast.

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Tasfiyah Kabir – New West Secondary

After graduation, she plans to attend either McGill or UBC; she hopes to pursue a career in healthcare, ideally as a pediatrician. Her favourite subjects in school were biology and psychology. She’d like to give a special shout out to her family, the NWSS staff, and all the wellwishers who have been a part of her journey.

Jackie Crowley – Richmond Secondary

After graduation, he plans on going to UBC to study engineering. Jackie hopes to pursue a career in civil and mechanical engineering. He wants to give a special shout out to his mom and dad who have always supported him, as well as his friends who have made this chapter of his life so wonderful.

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Charisma Bhartwaj – Yale Secondary

After graduation, she plans on attending Western University in London, Ontario with the goal of pursuing a career in finance. She wants to give a special shout out to the amazing staff at Yale Secondary and to her loving and supportive family.

Rhea Morrow – NDSS, North Delta

After graduation, she plans to attend the University of Waterloo. Rhea hopes to pursue a career in chemical engineering. Her favourite subject in school was math. She wants to give a special shout out to her parents.

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Ishaan Boparai – Seaquam Secondary

Ishaan Boparai is the valedictorian from Seaquam Secondary School in North Delta. After graduation, he plans to attend UBC to study Neuromechanical Sciences. Ishaan hopes to pursue a career in health care. His favourite subjects in school were English and Biology.

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