Wheeler Class of 2020 leaves lasting impression

Wheeler Grad 2020

The Wheeler Class of 2020 finally got their opportunity to walk as a group and receive their diplomas at their commencement ceremony on the morning of July 24. Although they encountered many challenges and unexpected events throughout their senior year, the Class of 2020 remained optimistic.

“We as a class didn’t shy away from the pandemic,” said class Valedictorian Morris Wan. “I think that is how the Class of 2020 should truly be remembered. Not as the class that was destroyed by COVID, but the class that found ways to succeed despite it.”

Principal Paul Gillihan agreed: “Your whole class will be remembered for what you have done and left for Wheeler High School.”

The Wheeler Class of 2020 consisted of 461 students and collectively received over $12 million in scholarship money. Principal Gillihan recognized Brian Kent as Wheeler’s AJC Cup Winner for 2020 and Adam Duffy as the Ray Kroc winner.

Principal Gillihan also noted that Ashton Cordisco received a $10,000 scholarship from Duck Tape for creating a prom tuxedo completely out of different colored rolls of duct tape, 27 rolls to be exact. (Read more about Ashton and the “Stuck at Prom” contest here.)

Before concluding his address, Principal Gillihan left the graduating class with three things to remember:

1) Be a positive force for change.

2) Take care of yourself.

3) Learn from the mistakes of others.

“As a former History teacher,” he said, “we always say ‘history repeats itself.’ It wouldn’t if we learned from the mistakes of others. So I charge you, seniors, to learn from our mistakes and don’t repeat them.”

Cobb County Board of Education member Charisse Davis certified the graduation and the diplomas were handed out, and received, with Wildcat enthusiasm.

Congratulations Wheeler Class of 2020! Go forward and be the change you want to see. Go Wildcats…