Leo Hayes High School in Fredericton hosts virtual graduation ceremony

N.B. recent graduates still hoping to walk across the stage
WATCH: The road to graduation has been bumpy for recent high school and university graduates. Some New Brunswick institutions are finding ways to organize graduation walks within safety guidelines. Megan Yamoah has more.

The road to graduation had been a bumpy one for Cydney Adamen. After becoming a teen mom, she dropped out of high school.

“My mom had a hard time waking me up and I would walk out and I had a lot of problems throughout high school. I had my daughter Octavia in 2018,” said Cydney Adamen.

Having a child inspired Cydney, so she went back to school to give her daughter a better life.

“My mom has been waiting a really long time to see this and I’m the first person to be able to do it, said Adamen.

Leo Hayes had a traditional high school graduation ceremony
Leo Hayes had a traditional high school graduation ceremony. Megan Yamoah / Global News

Fellow graduate Regan Barry has been accepted to a six-year medicine program in Ireland. She hopes the pandemic will not put a pin in her plans for the fall.

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“If I can only do online then I’ll stay home for a year, but if not then I’ll be headed there and my plane is booked for Sept. 15,” said Regan Barry.

READ MORE: Emotional song written by U.S. teen strikes a chord with Canadian graduates

Leo Hayes set up their gym for the ceremony. To accommodate social distancing regulations, only the family of the student crossing the stage can enter.

“We have four time slots and we have the alphabet broken up, and they can come morning or afternoon,” said Sherry Norton-Graham, acting principal at Leo Hayes High School.

“It’s cute, it’s heartwarming to see their smiles … they are excited about this.”
Parents take photos at Leo Hayes 2020 Graduation
Parents take photos at Leo Hayes 2020 Graduation. Megan Yamoah / Global News

Parents snapped pictures and became overwhelmed with emotion watching the hurried process of calling the students name, a brief photo op, and the symbolic moving of the tassle to the left.

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“It felt really good because we didn’t think it was actually going to happen,” Heather Gruchy, a proud parent.

READ MORE: Nova Scotia high schools planning graduations for class of 2020

The virtual graduation with guest speakers will be posted on the Leo Hayes website.