Opinion: A letter to the Loyola Class of 2020


Photo illustration by JC Canicosa

Jc Canicosa

Dear Loyola Class of 2020,

It sucks that this is how we’re all saying goodbye. By frantically hitting each other up after University President Tanya Tetlow dropped the news that we moved to online for the rest of the year (which will forever be known as “The Email”) or by reading each other’s heartfelt social media tributes to college.

While it’s not the farewell that gives our 3.5 years here justice, Class of 2020, it’s the one we got. And I wouldn’t change a thing about my four years here.

Listen Class of 2020, we’ve been through a lot of s— together. A lot of s— that brought us together that other classes can’t say they had.

No one knows what those Biever dorms were like after Trump won in 2016 but us. Remember after he took Pennsylvania, and that wall in between Tulane and Loyola was packed with freshmen and skaters looking to smoke their feelings away?

And remember that first Voodoo when “Closer” by the Chainsmokers officially became the anthem to our freshman year? I feel like literally everyone in our class has some crazy story about that weekend that they’ll bury deep into the recesses of their minds when we have to eventually transition into real adulthood.

And who can forget that infamous Broadway party when the porch collapsed?

The point is, Class of 2020, that we’ve been through a lot together. We’ve got stories and countless moments of Loyolan history that will connect us for the rest of our lives, and there isn’t a setback or virus that could ever change that.

We’re the class that founded Latin Night at The Willow. We’re the class that witnessed the tragic rise and fall of The Palms. We’re the class that survived Loyola’s financial probation.

What can’t we do?

Because, Class of 2020, seeing how all of us have grown from nervous or nervous-but-fronting orientation freshman to confident, self-assured (arguably) functioning members of society has been one of the greatest pleasures of my life, and I wouldn’t change a single 4 a.m. City Diner trek, hungover Thursday morning class or embarrassing next-day Snapchat story.

And don’t get me wrong, I’m heartbroken that I have to let go of Loyola so abruptly. This is such a unique community, and there aren’t many places in the world like it.

I don’t think there’s another campus in the world where the girl who gave me her cheese fries at F&M’s is the same one giving me the Body of Christ at Mass on Sunday night (100% true story). That just doesn’t happen anywhere but Loyola University New Orleans.

Letting go of my life here is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. It’s difficult to think about how I’m not gonna have any more 25 minute conversations on the way to class, because I was already late, so why not? It’s difficult to think about how I’m not gonna have anymore “oh, s—” moments when I’m a few drinks in and realize I have a Blackboard quiz due at 11:59 tonight. It’s difficult to think about how I’m not gonna have to lose any more money because my friend was tabling at the Danna Center and peer pressured me into donating to their cause.

But, Class of 2020, this COVID-19 stuff is just another obstacle that’s been thrown our way, which will, in time, just be another story about something that we all got through together, like we always do.

Whenever commencement does end up happening, I can’t wait to see you all there and to see us get the proper send-off we deserve. But just know that even apart, we always got each other.


Journalist, frat boy, Resident Assistant, Awakening staff member, Steph Curry-like pickup basketball player, and future Loyola alum,

JC Canicosa