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LHS senior Jenna Perry uses Instagram to highlight classmates

by Justin Scott
contributing reporter

With the move to online schooling, Lowell High School has made an effort to highlight their seniors through the use of social media. 
One LHS senior has seen that initiative and been able to highlight her fellow seniors as well. The “LHS 2020 Seniors” Instagram account kicked off on April 11th, on the popular social media platform Instagram. LHS senior Jenna Perry has been able to highlight 100 of her classmates so far with congratulatory posts.
“When bored in quarantine I found myself overwhelmed with all of the thoughts of what was and was not going to happen with senior year. The negative media can be hard to read in an unsure time, but I kept reminding myself that I have college to look forward to, and that there are dreams and goals waiting for all of the seniors that we can’t lose focus on because of a change in lifestyle,” Perry told us.
Using a phone application called PicsArt, she made templates of graphics that take approximately five minutes per design to finish. Each graphic has the senior’s senior photo, and future college and major or work place. So far the account, under the username “lhs2020seniors_” has over 300 followers, mostly members of the LHS Class of 2020.
“My favorite part about running the account is celebrating the peers that I’ve grown up with. I’m excited to see everyone following their dreams and finding success and sharing it publicly so that we can all support each other and celebrate each other during a crazy time in life. The project has allowed me to use my passion for design and social media to celebrate others,” added Jenna.
 It’s not just seniors going into college that Perry has highlighted. The most recent data from the US Department of Education says 70% of high school graduates go straight into college, but the other 30% go into trades, full-time work, and the Military. Perry has been able to highlight many of those individuals as well. Examples include members of the LHS class of 2020 like Sebastian Szymanski who is going into the Navy, Seth Perez going into electrical work, Jayleigh Bileth going to Ferris State and the National Guard, and Aaron Fritsma going into automotive and diesel mechanics work at Kamminga & Roodvoets. 
 “When celebrating seniors I think a lot of people expect you to go to college, but the students that decide to follow their passions through other routes are just as deserving. The world needs people in trades, the workplace etc. and this pandemic has really highlighted the fact that we rely on those workers more than we recognize in everyday life. They’re essential and need to be celebrated,” added Perry.
 While the class of 2020 is in unique circumstances, this year’s Lowell seniors are moving on to do some exciting things.
 “I’m so proud of the Class of 2020 for staying strong through all of this. I am so incredibly grateful for the support of the students, parents and community and the willingness to take time to follow the account and help celebrate the students virtually, and show them that they are not alone. This is an abnormal senior year, but I don’t want to let the things taken away from us affect the plans and excitement we all have for the future. Red Arrows for Life!” 

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