Six hundred eighty seniors are expected to graduate from Worthington City Schools this weekend.
Thomas Worthington High School seniors graduate at noon and Worthington Kilbourne seniors follow at 4 p.m. Sunday, May 21, at the Battelle Grand ballroom in the Greater Columbus Convention Center.
Social media will play a part in the ceremony: District leaders created two Snapchat geofilters for commencement day, said Don Taylor, a communications specialist for the district.
He said the Snapchat filters would be available at the convention center before, during and after the ceremonies.
"The Snapchat filters allow us to congratulate our seniors and give them ways to celebrate the day through social media," he said.
Pete Scully, principal at Thomas Worthington, said the class of 2017 "has several things that make it stand out."
"It is one of the more ambitious groups of students we've seen in a while, when looking at Advanced Placement and College Credit Plus participation," he said. "This class has a broad and diverse set of leaders, a strong sense of community and regularly comes together to take collective action.
"It's pretty neat to witness a tight-knit group like this one. It's been a pleasure to work with them."
Scully will be one of the speakers during the ceremony, welcoming the students and introducing other speakers, such as Superintendent Trent Bowers and Jim Rao, the student council president.
Angie Adrean, the Worthington Kilbourne principal, said the class of 2017 "truly values the phrase, In Unity there is strength."
"The most recent demonstration of this is now on permanent display in our building," she said. "Our seniors collaborated with a local artist to design and paint a mural titled Worthington Strong, symbolizing their strength as a class."
She said the mural is a painting of a tree, symbolizing enduring strength.
"Just as our seniors have become rooted into their school life, a tree is also rooted into the earth while it's branches flow freely in the sky," she said.
The branches in the mural come together to form a large blue heart.
In the center are the words "Worthington Strong" painted across the heart.
"I have been struck, yet not surprised, by their sense of empathy for their classmates and others," Adrean said. "They value relationships and take pride in knowing each other."