A word from Purdue's 2020 graduation speakers

Through it all, you kept going; the phrase Purdue University is giving to the class of 2020 graduates. The 2020 class is having a virtual commencement because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is the first time ever it is being held not in person.

Posted: May 13, 2020 12:03 AM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) -- Through it all, you kept going; the phrase Purdue University is giving to the class of 2020 graduates.

The 2020 class is having a virtual commencement because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is the first time ever it is not being held in person.

Six students were chosen to address their peers during the virtual graduation.

Many of them said they stayed resilient during this unparalleled time.

"We got the opportunity to go into Elliot and film it and that was really special," said Jordyn Whaley.

Whaley is from West Lafayette and received her degree in nursing. She will start a nursing gig in Indianapolis in the coming months.

"It was was a really cool experience," said Mark D'Aloia. "I am really glad we got the opportunity to do it in Elliot."

D'Aloia will move to Ann Arbor soon to start his career is sales engineering. He said he loves talking to people and loved learning about engineering, 

"Definitely in honor to be speaking in front of everybody," said Evan Wang.

Wang is from Zionsville and starts his job in Chicago in August.

Whaley, D'Aloia and Wang are three faces, three people, three graduates you will see during Purdue's 2020 commencement.

They were chosen as student responders.

"I was definitely excited," said Whaley. "It was special for me to have something to look forward to."

"Feels like an awesome culmination of what I have done here and it almost a sense of closure," said D'Aloia.

"It's definitely a distinguished position because I am representing so much of my class," said Wang.

The class of 2020 is filled with more 7,500 students who can't celebrate graduation in the traditional sense but they can make it their own.

"Everybody is going to be talking about this class," said Chris Pass. This is going to be talked about in history class down the road. They are trailblazers and the went out in true Boilermaker fashion."

Pass was pivotal in the commencement challenge. She helped organized what will hopefully be an unforgettable ceremony.

Her job is to make commencement the greatest it can be.

"I'm very proud of them along with the whole team," said Pass. "We want them to know we are proud and wanted to celebrate them.
All graduates will get the opportunity to walk in any upcoming Purdue commencement."

Again a link to all of the graduation ceremonies are here. 

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