WHITTIER – Whittier Union seniors donned college apparel, held school pennants and posed with colorful balloons as they reminisced about their high school experiences and celebrated their next steps – into college, military or careers – during virtual College Signing Day activities on May 1.

College Signing Day recognizes high school seniors’ commitment to continuing their education at four-year universities, community colleges, the military or vocational schools. Although many universities have extended decision day until June 1, many students have already made their choices.

“Senior year is full of important milestones for students, including celebrations of their exceptional academic accomplishments and plans for the future,” Superintendent Martin Plourde said. “It is essential to ensure the Class of 2020 is honored for their hard work, and I commend all our dedicated teachers, staff, counselors and administrators who continue to find ways to support our seniors from afar.”

In previous years, Whittier Union seniors were treated to schoolwide festivities, where they were cheered on by classmates and teachers as they walked a red carpet, posed for photos and inspired crowds of underclassmen to work toward similar goals.

This year, Whittier Union’s comprehensive high schools shifted the celebrations online, ensuring students were recognized for their accomplishments from the safety of their homes.

College and military announcements dominated California High School’s official Instagram page, highlighting students’ intentions to pursue degrees, certifications and careers in nursing, criminal justice, aerospace engineering, law enforcement, theater arts, welding and more.

La Serna High School’s senior Instagram page features colorful tributes to its seniors, highlighting students’ name, college of choice and intended major. La Serna’s seniors were accepted to an array of respected colleges and universities, including UC Berkeley, UCLA, USC, Claremont McKenna College, Laguna College of Art and Design and more.

Pioneer High School encouraged students to announce their commitments using a school-branded template; each personalized post was then shared to the school’s Class of 2020 Instagram page. In their own words – and using their own embellishments to the school template – seniors discussed their plans after high school, including attending UCs or CSUs.

Santa Fe High School seniors recapped their high school experiences – and shared what’s to come – on the school’s College and Career Center Instagram page. Alongside their college acceptances, students reminisced about their favorite high school memories, offered advice to their peers and discussed how they hope to make an impact on the world.

“I really enjoyed my years at Santa Fe, and now that they were cut short, it makes me realize how much I enjoyed simply bonding with my classmates and friends,” senior Arisbeth Melendrez said in her post, which also announced her admission to Biola University. “But I am happy to say my new journey awaits.”

Whittier High School seniors sported college shirts or posed with signs and pennants for their college announcements, featured on the school’s Class of 2020 Instagram page.

Many students seized the opportunity to stage spirited and creative announcements. Whittier High senior Kaitlyn Suarez, who will attend Occidental College and play softball, posed at a table flanked by balloons in the college’s colors and filled with Occidental College paraphernalia.

050620_WUHSD_COLLEGESIGNING1: California High School celebrated its Virtual Decision Day by posting photos of its Class of 2020 on social media.

050620_WUHSD_COLLEGESIGNING2: La Serna High School recognized its seniors’ postsecondary choices through various social media channels.

050620_WUHSD_COLLEGESIGNING3: Pioneer High School created Commitment Day templates for seniors to celebrate their postsecondary choices and share through social media.

050620_WUHSD_COLLEGESIGNING4: Santa Fe High School’s College and Career Center social media page enabled students to share their college choices and reminisce about their high school experiences.

050620_WUHSD_COLLEGESIGNING5: Whittier High School celebrated College Signing Day on social media, which featured students, including Occidental College-bound Kaitlyn Suarez, clad in spirited gear.