Grade 12 students attend annual senior sunrise

Solenne+Jackson+%28%2721%29%2C+Mona+Marouf+%28%2721%29+and+Eleanor+Benton+%28%2721%29+pose+two+meters+apart+in+front+of+the+sunrise.+Grade+12+students+gathered+at+the+top+of+Primrose+Hill+at+5%3A45+a.m.+to+watch+the+sunrise.

Emily Forgash

Solenne Jackson (’21), Mona Marouf (’21) and Eleanor Benton (’21) pose two meters apart in front of the sunrise. Grade 12 students gathered at the top of Primrose Hill at 5:45 a.m. to watch the sunrise.

Emily Forgash and Sal Cerrell

Per tradition, the Grade 12 class attended the annual senior sunrise celebration Sept. 4. Around 100 students met atop Primrose Hill to watch the sunrise and mark the beginning of their final year.

To better fall in line with government guidelines for outdoor gatherings, Grade 12 students were not given their red “senior” shirts to wear to the park. Student Council President Micaella Lavi (’21) said this was to draw less attention to the group.

“I honestly think it was a good idea [to not wear the shirts] … just incase – this is probably the worst case scenario – someone stops us and was like ‘what is everyone in the same shirt doing here,’ and they’d be fining us, and it’s not worth it,” she said.

Johnny Xavier (’21) said he was disappointed about not being able to wear the shirts.

“[They’re] pretty much part of the tradition, so I kind of wanted to wear them,” he said. “But I’m wearing a red hoodie right now to make up for it.”

Rohit Venuturupalli (‘21) also said that he was saddened that the senior class was not able to wear the shirts. 

“It didn’t feel like an ASL experience [without the shirts],” he said.

It didn’t feel like an ASL experience without the shirts.”

— Rohit Vanuturupalli ('21)

Xavier also said that the date of the sunrise was a point of contention since some students are still under a government-mandated self-isolation.

“I’ll say I think we should’ve waited until next Friday, but since it’s part of the tradition to do it on the first Friday, I guess it’s fair enough,” he said. “It sucks for people who still have to quarantine.”

In addition to the tradition of doing the senior sunrise on the first Friday of the school year, Lavi said it needed to happen as soon as possible in case school needs to close in the near future.

“We needed to do it today because who knows what’s going to happen in the future?” she said. “If we can do it, we should, and we did.”

Lavi said that the point of the sunrise is to set the tone for the rest of the school year.

“I think the idea is: let’s do a senior sunrise because it’s the beginning of the end, and so at the end of the year we’ll do a sunset because that’s the closing of it,” she said. “A new day has started, we can become whoever we are, we can be friends with whomever we want to be and take advantage of what the year has to offer.” 

A new day has started, we can become whoever we are, we can be friends with whomever we want to be and take advantage of what the year has to offer.”

— Micaella Lavi ('21)

Xavier said that he likes the tradition of the senior sunrise, and added that it was a nice way for Grade 12 students to bond.

“It’s a good way to start the year, a good way to unite our grade,” he said. “I like the idea of having a sunrise in the beginning and a sunset at the end.”

Similarly, Venuturupalli said that he was happy the event went forward amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“It was a really nice event,” he said. “I got to do a lot of the bonding with my peers that I wasn’t able to do … because of [social distancing].”