Brightest & Best goes virtual with high school seniors celebrated on-air and online

Posted at 5:57 PM, May 29, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-29 18:13:46-04

(WXYZ) — It has been a WXYZ tradition. For more than 40 years we’ve celebrated the Brightest & Best graduating seniors from all over Southeast Michigan.

Because of the pandemic the event that was supposed take place earlier this month has been canceled.

But starting this week the seniors will still get a chance to be in the spotlight.

For decades we’ve invited the Brightest & Best students to Broadcast House to celebrate their achievements.

“These students have all excelled in different ways. They don’t have to be salutatorians or valedictorian,” says WXYZ-TV General Manager Mike Murri.

When the event was canceled, Murri immediately came up with a new way to honor these seniors with video tributes that will be on-air and online. You can see around 200 students getting their moment to shine.

“Our Brightest & Best students are not just great in the classroom, but they are wonderful outside of the classroom, they are athletes, they are thespians, they are musicians,” says Troy School’s Superintendent Dr. Richard Machesky.

Machesky is thrilled WXYZ is continuing the Brightest & Best tradition.

Educators like Principal Nicholas Brown of the Academy of the Americas in Detroit says the shutdown is preparing students to be ready for whatever life throws at them.

“To think in ways we might not have had to before," he says.

For WXYZ - it’s a way to say thank you to our seniors!

“The hard work , your passion, your ingenuity, your creativity because you’re truly an inspiration to all of us,” says Murri.

One thing is for certain — the students are handling the current situation with dignity and resilience— and we can all learn from that.

They still represent the future. Should we face this again, or as we continue to push through this, we are going to need them to be at their very best and feel the love so they can use that moving forward,” says Brown.

"Gives is great hope. In the midst of the coronavirus, I think people need that and these students certainly represent amazing hope for our future,” says Murri.