Dear Campus Community,
I am pleased to share today details of our upcoming 2021 Undergraduate Commencement in May as well as the plans we are developing to celebrate the Class of 2020 this fall. These will be in-person gatherings, although by necessity they will require much different arrangements as we protect the safety of our students and the community amid the pandemic.
Undergraduate Commencement will be held Friday, May 14, and will take the form of four smaller and shorter ceremonies in McGuirk Alumni Stadium. To maintain compliance with public health guidelines, the ceremonies will be limited to graduates only, with no guests allowed. Graduates must follow public health protocols including social distancing and mask wearing. Each ceremony will be live-streamed for those unable to attend or who wish to celebrate from a distance. The Commencement Office will follow up with additional details in the coming weeks, including specific COVID-19 testing requirements for graduates to gain access to their ceremony.
While these ceremonies are certainly not traditional Commencement events, they do offer the opportunity for students to gather and celebrate their achievements. Our Student Advisory Group for Commencement emphasized the importance of having an in-person event, and we are pleased to make that happen under what we all know are challenging conditions.
Meanwhile, we have not forgotten about our Class of 2020. We are now developing plans to welcome them back to campus during Homecoming in November 2021. Your long-awaited commencement ceremony will be held!
Careful attention needs to be paid to the many details still to be worked out for both the Class of 2020 and 2021 as we move forward. Updates will be communicated to you and can be found on our Commencement website.
I very much look forward to celebrating with you. Go UMass!
Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy