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Ending senior year in isolation

By Ellen Hu

Denali Editor-in-Chief

I learned that Summit Denali High School would be moving to virtual school the day after I got home from a college accepted students day in Oregon. For the past several weeks, I have been finding ways to enjoy what I have and making the most of my senior year.

IMG_4732A college sweatshirt arrives in the mail on April 30, the day before National College Signing Day. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

Left: I fill out notecards with contact information from graduating seniors for Denali’s college library. The project was started at the beginning of the 2019-20 school year from student council, but eventually moved to an individual student group. The goal of the library is to provide future Denali students with resources to learn more about different colleges and the college experience. While the team is not able to meet in-person, we are still working to make sure that the library will be available for next year’s seniors. A portion of this project includes collecting contact information from seniors who would be happy to answer questions and making this information available on notecards which will be placed in the library along with pamphlet information. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

Right: Working on schoolwork and meeting for clubs from home has become routine. I meet regularly with the two editors from The Grizzly, Denali’s print publication, to hand off different materials and give them more responsibilities so that they’re prepared to take over the paper next year. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

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I wait to conduct a video interview with Denali seniors for the Class of 2020 video that the Denali student council asked me to create. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu






In lieu of a school-held Prom, our family puts together our own. PHOTO CREDIT: Dave Hu



Left: I work with my family’s laser cutter to engrave fun messages for friends and family who are graduating this year. I have put a special focus on engraving each person’s school logo onto the notes. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

Top Right: I pack graduation gifts for friends. Although I’m not able to personally hand the gifts to them, I am planning to drop the packages off on their doorsteps the day of our virtual graduation. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

Bottom Right: I video call with friends at lunch so that we can catch up on what’s been going on with schoolwork and how we’re coping with the isolation. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu



I have been staying up later to do my work. Being on screens so late at night makes it more difficult to go to sleep. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

IMG_4780-2My family eats dinner with each other every night. I enjoy spending more time with them, and knowing that I won’t be at home next year to share dinner with them on a regular basis makes me sad. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

Left: I look through past photos and find many of the memories that my friends and I have already made. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

Middle: Denali’s graduation plan includes caps that can be customized, so I decorate mine with a design inspired by my favorite movie, “Big Hero Six.” PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

Right: In my free time I have been looking through my closet and picking out different things I’ll be taking to college or that I will need in my dorms next year. With more time on my hands, I have a lot more time to think and plan for dorm life. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

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Denali administrators and senior mentors hold a meeting with students from the Class of 2020 on May 5. In the meeting, Denali executive director Kevin Bock introduces a three-part plan that the school is going to take to celebrate graduation. The three parts consist of a virtual graduation, a drive-through diploma pick-up and a graduation party when restrictions are lifted. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

FEATURED IMAGE (at top of post)Several weeks after the shelter-in-place order was put in place, my family places stuffed animals in our windows to entertain walkers on the street. PHOTO CREDIT: Ellen Hu

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