Graduates in the Class of 2021: 545
Distinguished Honors graduates: Edith Barlin, Justin Berghorst, Carissa Blumka, Samuel Bull, Elijah Chen, Brando Civitanova, Maxwell Ein, Emily Ennis, Madeline Esposito, Kathryn Figliomeni, Lindsey Good, Ebi Hadi, Melissa Jachim, William Knudsen, Sean Lifka, Finnea Loftus, Sarah Lupescu, Lucas Marra, Grace McTigue, Eliot Michaels, John Mielke, Alexa Moy, Madeline Naisbitt, Morgan Naylor, Lucas Nielsen, Katelynn Ohk, Gaja Palubinskas, Noah Pardue, Andrew Pitts, Anastasia Polihronidis, William Riemer, Madeline Schallmoser, Benjamin Schaub, Jessica Spahn, Julia Szostak, Ashleigh Szydlowski, Christopher (Emmitt) Thulin, Emma van de Wetering, Jesse Wei
Graduation Speakers: Delaney Durbin and Syed Farhan
National Merit Finalists: Justin Berghorst, Carissa Blumka, Madeline Naisbitt
National Merit Commended Students: Simone Baillargeon, Edith Barlin, Samuel Bull, Elijah Chen, Joshua Delorto, Madeline Esposito, Ebi Hadi, Finnea Loftus, Lucas Marra, Eliot Michaels, Lucas Nielsen, Noah Pardue, William Riemer
• Sam Bull, 2021 Illinois Journalist of the Year
• Mary Lerch, National Gold Medalist in the 2021 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards
• Eliot Michaels, National Silver Medalist in the 2021 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards
• Emmitt (Christopher) Thulin, Illinois High School Association's 2020-21 All-State Academic Team
• 19 students performed in the 2020-21 Illinois Music Education Association All-State Bands, orchestras, choirs, jazz bands and vocal jazz ensembles
• Chess Team competed at state
• DECA State Competitors: Chloe Carlson, Pentrick Chen, Himani Nai, Manu Nithya Suthan, Ryan Trausch
• State Speech Competitors: Grace McTigue, Madeline Naisbitt, and Emmitt Thulin
• State Journalism Competitors: Amelia Carlson, Erin Peters, Madeline Redpath, Madeline Schallmoser, Olivia Shirk
• Conference Champions:
Boys Cross Country (also Regional and Sectional Champions)
Girls CO-OP Gymnastics
• State competition qualifiers:
Girls Badminton (three players)
Coed Cheer (Team)
Boys Golf (one player)
• "Snoopy the Musical," in-person outdoor performances (October)
• "Freaky Friday," in-person indoor performances (April)
Senior Class gift: North sign for new Prince Street Plaza
What traditional events were adapted for the pandemic and how?
• Prom modified to meet safety guidelines by creating a smaller celebration of only seniors at an outdoor venue with a meal, music and fireworks.
• For homecoming we created a virtual assembly featuring performances by many students and groups as well as recognition of our homecoming court.
What were the most significant challenges faced by the Class of 2021 and how did they overcome them?
The Downers Grove North High School Class of 2021 had to adjust to remote and hybrid learning, missed out on traditional celebrations such as homecoming, saw sports seasons shortened and state series canceled, participated in many activities virtually, and wore face masks and at times even face shields when they were allowed to be together in person. Despite these challenges, they found new ways to learn, to compete, to perform, to celebrate, and to generate school spirit. As a result, they experienced much success in academics, activities and athletics.
Principal's reflections on the Class of 2021:
Of the many accomplishments of the Class of 2021, I am most proud of how they came together to help others. The senior class raised money to donate blankets to a woman's shelter, purchased food pantry supplies for families in our community, held food drives, organized staff recognitions in order to show gratitude for all that DGN staff did to help students learn and grow through the pandemic, and participated in social justice efforts in our school and our community. The DGN Class of 2021 will be remembered for their resilience, creativity, and generosity.
-- Principal Janice Schwarze