With the coronavirus pandemic disrupting the second half of the spring 2020 semester and canceling in-person classes, Hesston College has made the decision to host a virtual commencement ceremony for the Class of 2020 on Saturday, May 23, at 7 p.m. The ceremony will be available for streaming through the college’s website.
“As Administrative Council and the Academics Office discussed different options for commencement either now or in the future, it was decided that holding a virtual commencement ceremony was the most equitable option,” wrote Brent Yoder, vice president of Academics, in a campus-wide email on Friday, May 1. “We chose to allow ourselves a bit of additional time after final grades are entered to prepare the program, but we wanted to offer it as close as possible to the end of the semester before the focus for many people shifts to the summer. This event will have many components similar to an in-person commencement but tweaked to fit a virtual space.”
The college had its traditional in-person commencement ceremony scheduled for May 16, but had announced on April 6 that the in-person ceremony would be canceled for 2020.
The virtual program will recognize each of th graduates of the Class of 2020 and be highlighted with a brief message from President Joseph A. Manickam, as well as hear from student speakers nominated by faculty and staff and voted up by their peers.
“We are disappointed that we can’t celebrate the Class of 2020 in the ways we would have liked, but we’re hopeful that graduates and their families and friends will still find ways to celebrate them as we honor and recognize them in this way, said Yoder.”