In recent years, we've seen a cultural shift away from historical patterns that consistently saw those with mental disabilities like Down syndrome ignored, excluded and underestimated.
While it would be naive to suggest that such behavior never happens anymore, it's now much more likely to attract backlash from a groundswell of supporters for whoever is affected.
Instead, we're seeing more examples of parents, collegiate organizations, and even major fashion outlets celebrating the differences of those with Down syndrome and recognizing what they've accomplished.
And while it's important to see them represented on the world's larger stages, it's even more affirming when we see their peers make similar efforts all on their own.
That's why prom night was even more joyous than usual for one Virginia high school.