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Editors' Note: A socially distanced goodbye and thank you

Every year, The Herald's Commencement Magazine collects the memories and reflections of the senior class. This year, that collection is inevitably shaped by the grief and loss COVID-19 has caused. Since last March, many Herald articles have sought to document the major, disparate hardships created by the pandemic — especially for people of color, U-FLi and international students. But here, we wanted to capture an irregular senior year at Brown and to also acknowledge some of the smaller losses: few in-person classes, skipped and muted traditions, time at a distance from the people we love.

Amidst all of this, we at The Herald found some comfort through Zoom calls, distanced coffee and commiseration. Thank you to the Herald staff members who kept the newspaper going under these strange and challenging circumstances, some of whom are featured in these pages. Thank you to the seniors who shared their reflections, in columns and news interviews alike. Thank you to the Herald alums who have donated and offered support throughout this financially challenging year for The Herald. For this beautiful magazine template we are indebted to designer Bilal Ismail Ahmed and the 129th Editorial Board, who designed their own Commencement Magazine only to never see this template used in print.

The class of 2020 never got an in-person Commencement; the class of 2021 may not get to experience the fanfare and unmitigated celebration of a typical senior year, or Senior Week, or Campus Dance — but we will walk through the Van Wickle Gates, and for that, we are grateful. This year's Magazine pays tribute to loss, but also to the conversations and action this year has stimulated, and to great gratitude for the people and experiences we could enjoy throughout our four years here. We hope, in reading it, that these stories and reflections resonate with you as they have with us.

—This Editors' Note was written by The Herald’s 130th editorial board: Colleen Cronin ’21, Allie Reed ’21, Sophie Culpepper ’21, Elise Ryan ’21 and Alex Smolar ’21



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