The Legacy of the Senior Walk

Let’s take a look at the highly anticipated tradition of George Ranch High school, the Senior Walk.


Rachel Guidry

An overview of the class of 2017’s Senior Walk

By Daryn O'Neal, Writer

For many years at Gr, the beloved seniors take an emotional journey down memory lane as they walk through the halls of the very school that they are about to graduate from. With the opening of Polly Ryon and Reading middle school, the seniors of each class also have the opportunity to walk through the middle schools where they can visit with old teachers and look back upon great memories from their middle school experience as well as their high school ones.

This Friday our Seniors of Class of 2022 participated in this highly anticipated tradition. The afternoon was met with hugs, laughter, tears, and inspiration, making this day one to remember.

The Senior Walk allows the students, teachers and families celebrate the current seniors and their accomplishments. The walk provides a tradition that GR students look forward to experience when they become a senior

— Ms. Ford

College and Career Facilitator, Ms. Ford said.

Clearly, due to the success of this tradition, the Senior Walk has a very strong value to the school, but where did it all start, and what impact has it had on students and teachers and alumni?

Although this tradition has always been centered around the Seniors, the event came into formation for the underclassmen.

“The Senior Walk began over 10 years ago with George Ranch’s first graduating class. It was established for the underclassmen to see the graduation experience and motivate those students to work harder to their own graduation.” Former Choir teacher and current Administrator Mr. Cuellar said.

Because the event was so memorable and exciting for both students and staff, the Senior Walk officially became an annual tradition.

“It was thrilling!  The music and the atmosphere were off the hook!  And I got a little verklempt seeing some of my former students whom I hadn’t seen in years.  They had grown up so much,” twelve year George Ranch French teacher Mrs. Harris said.

Several teachers at our school, who also participated in the Senior Walk while they served their time as students at GR, became teachers at the very school they graduated from. Therefore the Senior Walk offered a very strong feeling of nostalgia as they watched students follow in their footsteps. Literally!

“The most memorable thing about my Senior Walk was seeing all my teachers, friends and classmates in the hallway cheering us on for reaching a milestone in life. Seeing everyone with a big smile and laughing at the fact that we made it through high school and excited to take on college and life as an adult,” George Ranch alumni, current Pre Calculus teacher and NHS Coordinator Ms. Cao said.

It is easy to say that when these former students became teachers the emotions didn’t change. In fact, they became even stronger.

“The senior walk is almost more emotional now as a teacher than it was as a senior. I student- taught a lot of these seniors last year, so it is sentimental to see them graduate after getting to mentor them as a student teacher,” George Ranch alumni and current English teacher Ms. Buchanan said.

Weather it be the students, staff, teachers, or administrators, all can agree that the Senior Walk is a tradition that George Ranch will always hold in our hearts for years to come. The George Ranch family enjoyed seeing the class of 2022 partake in this legacy, especially Mrs. Reeves who has a special connection to one of the soon-to-be-graduates.

” I think this year will be the most emotional.  It always strikes a nerve when that music starts playing, but this year my own daughter will be one of those seniors.  I have watched this class grow up since kindergarten.  They are a special class for sure!,” Mrs. Reeves said.

In the end it doesn’t take a student, alumni, or even a parent of a student experiencing the Senior Walk to harbor a sense of pride and appreciation. Many teachers who have watched the graduating class grow up feel emotional about this experience as well.

“I’m so proud of them! We teachers see how hard students have worked and understand the hopes our students have for their future, so getting to see them not only celebrate these four years of perseverance, but relish in the hope and excitement of the future to come for them, is something we are privileged and proud to share with them during this event,” Ms. Toress said.