An Update on Commencement 2020

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The following is an update from President Thompson regarding KWU's 2020 Commencement ceremony, which remains set for August 15. This message was originally sent to the Class of 2020 the week of July 20.

Greetings, KWU Class of 2020! I hope you and your loved ones are healthy and safe during these uncertain times. 

We are so excited to honor your accomplishment on August 15. The positive response from your fellow graduates this summer regarding a traditional commencement ceremony is a clear indication you want to return to campus and share this special day with your family and friends, as well as the KWU family. That day is rapidly approaching, and with so much uncertainty and fluidity in our world, I wanted to briefly elaborate on some of the policies and procedures that will be in place for Commencement 2020. We have made a handful of changes to ensure that the event will take place as scheduled, in a safe and healthy manner. 

Venue Change: The 2020 Commencement ceremony will be held at 9 a.m. at the Graves Family Sports Complex. Guests will enter at the south gate. A reception will be on the north concourse immediately following the ceremony.

You must RSVP to sylvia.kvacik@kwu.edu by July 31. This will help us plan and orchestrate this event to the fullest, and is strictly required due to some of the other steps we are taking. 

Tickets will be required. Each graduate will be given four (4) complimentary guest tickets to the Commencement ceremony. In accordance with recent nationwide practices regarding COVID-19 mitigation, including those at nationally known athletics and other events, tickets will be strictly limited to four per graduate. This will enable social distancing inside the Graves Family Sports Complex. The ceremony will be livestreamed on the KWU Student Media YouTube page, and a precise link will be publicized on the KWU social media outlets in the days preceding the event. 

Two ticket pick-up times will be available. Graduates who have RSVP’d may pick up their tickets at the Advancement Office (Pioneer Hall) on Friday, August 14, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. There will also be a ticket will call booth outside of Graves Family Sports Complex Saturday morning. The booth will be located on the Claflin Avenue side of the stadium and will be open approximately 7:30 a.m. – 8:45 a.m. 

Face coverings will be required. Although the event will take place outside, face coverings will be required when entering the ceremony and when moving about, i.e., to the restrooms or coming to campus to pick up your tickets. Individuals may choose to remove their mask when seated, although everyone will be encouraged to wear their face covering throughout the event.

Socially distant seating will be strongly encouraged. All attendees (other than graduates) will be asked to sit with those in their party, and remain at least six feet away from other attendees.

While we wish we could have a full and crowded venue, we believe this plan allows for graduates to be able to attend with family and friends and celebrate this milestone moment safely. Thank you for your understanding, and for everything that you have given to KWU. We are fortunate to have each and every one of you as part of our KWU family. 

All the Best, 

MRT