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UD Still Hopes to Have a Graduation in 2020

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UD’s graduating seniors are still hoping they can come together to celebrate commencement this year

Two weeks ago the University of Delaware pulled the plug on the planned May 30 commencement, asking the graduating senior class at that time for input on how they wanted to be celebrated.

In a letter to the UD community today, President Dennis Assanis said survey respondents overwhelmingly requested that an in-person ceremony be held at a later date.

“The overarching preference emerging from the Commencement survey that many of you participated in expressed hope for the University to reschedule the convocations and/or main Commencement ceremony for later this year. An in-person celebration, dedicated to the Class of 2020, is our preference as well,” Assanis said in the letter.

 

Assanis said that picking a new date at this time was impossible, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but that updated plans would be shared in June.

“Whether this [a live event at UD] will be possible in 2020, of course, depends on the trajectory of the pandemic and the possible need to continue physical distancing. We are monitoring the COVID-19 situation in accordance with State and public health authorities every day, and we expect to provide you with an updated plan later in June as we consider all options.”

The full text of Assanis’ letter is below.

 

April 16, 2020

Dear Members of the Class of 2020,

Thank you to all of you who shared your opinions and ideas about how we can celebrate your graduation from the University of Delaware, even as we navigate the evolving reality of the coronavirus pandemic. Postponing next month’s Commencement ceremonies was a difficult decision, so I sincerely appreciate your patience and understanding during this challenging and unprecedented time. We are all very proud of you, the Class of 2020, and we are working very hard to properly recognize your degree completion.

Your perspective continues to provide valuable guidance as we plan our next steps. The overarching preference emerging from the Commencement survey that many of you participated in expressed hope for the University to reschedule the convocations and/or main Commencement ceremony for later this year. An in-person celebration, dedicated to the Class of 2020, is our preference as well. This will give us all another chance to share everything that makes UD so special, including our beautiful campus and vibrant Delaware community! Whether this will be possible in 2020, of course, depends on the trajectory of the pandemic and the possible need to continue physical distancing. We are monitoring the COVID-19 situation in accordance with State and public health authorities every day, and we expect to provide you with an updated plan later in June as we consider all options.

You have shown an inspiring resilience and a bold determination to finish strong during this difficult time. This is something to be very proud of as you complete your education at the University of Delaware. We understand that you want to celebrate the degree(s) you are receiving with your families and friends at the end of this semester, before you embark on the next chapter of your lives. So, stay tuned for information regarding a special online graduation tribute to the Class of 2020 in the coming weeks. We will also be in touch about updated Commencement/Convocation plans later, as noted above.

I sincerely hope that we will see each other again on campus before too long, so that we can all celebrate your great achievements as a proud Blue Hen family.

Sincerely,

signature of President Dennis Assanis
Dennis Assanis
President

 

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