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Bright Side 16: Celebrating our area's graduates

Graduation just isn't the same for high school and college seniors because of the pandemic. But that's not stopping unique celebrations.

It's graduation time for so many high school and college seniors. But this year, it's not quite the same because of the pandemic.

That doesn't mean we aren't going to celebrate their hard work.

Thanks to your help, Newswatch 16's Ryan Leckey gave a salute to seniors on Friday as part of his Bright Side 16 segment. 

For some, graduation will be unforgettable, and it's not only because of the pandemic. 

Signs of celebration continue to pop up on porches and yards across our area. It is all to honor the hard work of high school and college seniors. 

Although the class of 2020 didn't yet get the chance to strut their stuff on the big school stage, many are finding other ways to mark the big moment. 

Despite no official ceremony, the Pomp and Circumstance procession still played out, driveway style, in Scranton for both Wynter Gowarty and her mom Kerri.

"It was still pretty amazing. We made the best of it," mom Kerri Gowarty said.

The pair graduated just last weekend, together with bachelor degrees from Keystone College in LaPlume.

"My husband works at Keystone College. I'd been a nurse for 25 years, so I went back for the business route," Kerri said. 

As for Wynter, she started at Wilkes University and transferred to Keystone College in 2017. 

"I ended up graduating with my 'Child and Family Studies Degree' in 2020," Wynter said. 

Wynter added, "It just worked out perfectly. It was amazing. Definitely surreal. I never thought I'd be walking with my mom on graduation day. I don't know anybody else who can say they graduated college with their mom. It's something I'll definitely hold in my heart forever."

How to give your graduate a shout out:

WNEP-TV wants to make sure the class of 2020 gets their shout-outs across our social media platforms.

Whether you're a senior in college or high school, share your big accomplishment with Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania. 

Head here to find out how. 

How to get involved in Bright Side 16: 

The easiest way is by posting your uplifting photos or videos to Ryan's Facebook page when he puts the call out for those positive stories where you're making an impact.

Another way is to use "#BrightSide16" (all one word) on social media platforms such as Instagram and Twitter. This way, it allows Newswatch 16 to find your images a lot faster.

You can also text Newswatch 16. Store this number in your cellphone: 800-533-news AKA 800-533-6397. You can save that number as WNEP, Newswatch 16, or something fun like "My Bestie Leckey."

When texting, please type the word "BrightSide16" (all one word) in the message section of the text message.

Please be sure to include who's in the photo, what you're doing, and where you're from.

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