Youngstown’s East High School keeps tradition with graduation ceremony

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The new format looked a little different, but it kept with tradition

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Every community is trying to find the best way to honor seniors graduating from high school this year.

Youngstown’s East High School has its own way to honor seniors and keep with tradition.

Youngstown City School graduates usually walk across the stage at Stambaugh Auditorium.

That hasn’t changed this year, but this time, only four family members were allowed to be there.  

“One family member on stage giving them their diploma while the rest of the family members are in the cross isles, watching and supporting them from the house,” said Dani Dier, Stambaugh’s business manager.

Dier said she’s still not used to the new and unusual format.

“It’s definitely kind of surreal. The fact that normally you have a whole commencement that happens in an hour to two hours, and we’re literally spending 12 to 16 hours video-recording all of these students,” Dier said.

While they wish things could have been a little closer to normal, graduates and parents are remaining optimistic.

“Kataya Coney is my daughter, and I’m extremely proud. I know she’s kind of upset about it, but she made it,” said Damon Irby.

“Everybody’s not there, and it’s not a big crowd or audience, but at least I got to walk across the stage and my aunty called my name, so that’s all I wanted,” said Shawntelle Cain.

“It’s unfortunate for most people because they don’t get that full experience of actually hearing a cheerful crowd, but it’s an accomplishment at the end of the day,” said Zaylenn Brown.

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