No, it’s not the “last time in the swamp”

Graduation this year for the class of 2020 will take place in the swamp.

Michael Kleback

Graduation this year for the class of 2020 will take place in the swamp.

Picture this: it’s June of your senior year. Friends and family members surround you and your peers, all decked out in caps and gowns for the big day. The music starts playing as you walk across the stage and reach for the diploma. As you look out amongst the crowd, a sea of smiling faces applaud your efforts.

Although I didn’t explicitly mention a location, I bet that 99% of people imagined North Penn’s very own Crawford stadium. For years, it’s been used as the setting for thousands of excited seniors to march down on their big day. This stadium has a history, a purpose. 

Now, how would you feel if you weren’t able to graduate at Crawford stadium?

For the graduating class of 2020, this feeling was extremely close to becoming a reality. Due to an array of renovations that needed to be done, it became a very real possibility that seniors would have had to end their high school career somewhere else. 

Despite this commotion, it was later decided that the stadium’s renovations would be postponed, and seniors would indeed be graduating at Crawford stadium. Now, this leaves a myriad of questions. How does the class of 2020 feel about this? Do people really want to graduate in a place nicknamed “the swamp”? Would graduation lose some of its meaning if students weren’t able to spend their last day at North Penn actually at North Penn? Most importantly, however, where would the class have gone if Crawford stadium wasn’t available?

“In planning for the original timeframe that was proposed for the renovation, with the renovation beginning this past October and ending in June 2020, we had not developed a plan for graduation if the scheduled construction hit any roadblocks,” explained North Penn High School principal Mr. Nicholson. “I had been assured that the stadium would have been complete enough to hold graduation this coming June if the renovation would have gone on as originally planned, which it clearly did not. I was 100% planning to hold graduation in the renovated stadium.”

With this new influx of information, the matter of our graduation’s location began to shift. The two options were the renovated stadium and the swamp, and the school went with the latter. Now that the prospect of graduation being held somewhere else has been proven to be untrue, what opinion does the student body hold regarding their setting for graduation?

“Graduating at the original Crawford stadium is nostalgic because I’ve been going to football games there since sophomore year,” recalled senior Leo Cox. “I like being able to graduate in the place where I made so many sweet memories.”

For some individuals, however, the setting has another meaning.

“I’m happy that I get to graduate in the same stadium that many of my siblings have graduated before me,” expressed senior Elijah Slayton. 

In all, most students that I discussed this topic with were all in a general agreement – the school’s choice to push back renovations was ultimately a good one. Many people have a close association with the old Crawford stadium, making their final day at North Penn even more memorable.

So, we’ll see you there for the class of 2020’s graduation at the infamous Crawford stadium!