Wright State to hold virtual commencement ceremony for spring graduates on Oct. 24

After months of holding out hope for an in-person celebration, Wright State University announced it will hold a virtual commencement ceremony for the spring class of 2020.

Wright State will hold the virtual commencement ceremony on Saturday, Oct. 24, at 10 a.m.

The ceremony will celebrate Dayton Campus spring 2020 graduates and Lake Campus summer 2019 through spring 2020 graduates. More than 2,100 completed the requirements for graduation after the spring 2020 semester. The spring class of 2020 includes graduates who will receive 1,490 bachelor’s degrees, 576 master’s degrees, 25 doctoral degrees and 29 associate degrees. Read more about the spring class of 2020.

In an email to graduates, Wright State President Sue Edwards said that since Wright State is still unable to hold large gatherings, it is clear the university will not be able to host an in-person celebration this year. The State of Ohio Large still prohibits gatherings, and all official in-person university events remain postponed.

While an overwhelming majority of graduating students were not in favor of a virtual graduation ceremony, Edwards said, “as we entered the Fall Semester, I decided it was more important to hold a virtual event before the end of the year to celebrate our graduates and your hard work.”

“I know this news is not what you wanted to hear, and I apologize to each of you and your families,” she told graduates.

More information about the virtual commencement will be announced at a later date. The event will include remarks from Edwards, interim Provost Douglas Leaman, Faculty Senate President Laura Luehrmann, college deans and others.

The name of every graduate will be read immediately following the ceremony. Photos submitted by graduates in graduation apparel or Wright State gear will be shared during the virtual experience, on the university website and on university social media accounts. Graduates should email photos to graduation@wright.edu no later than Sept. 27.

“Commencement is a very special day for all graduating students and their families. Together we will do our best to make Oct. 24 a day to celebrate,” Edwards said.

While Wright State did not hold its spring commencement ceremony on May 2, some departments held virtual events for graduates. In a video message played for students graduating from the Department of Theatre, Dance and Motion Pictures, Oscar winner Tom Hanks paid tribute to Wright State’s class of 2020. Hanks called the graduates “the chosen ones” as they make their way through the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic.

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