To the December Class of 2020

A Message from Chancellor Gilliam Regarding December Commencement

Dear UNCG December Class of 2020,

We are just past the halfway point in a Fall semester – a semester like no other in our history –which means you are about two months from becoming UNCG alumni. I have been inspired by your resilience, your determination, and your strength in the face of adversity since last Spring. To say this group has earned its diplomas is an understatement.

You deserve our respect, our thanks, and our full attention to celebrating what you have done. We will do our best to provide that platform in an environment where the COVID-19 virus still dictates what we can do and how we can come together. It has become clear that a large, traditional December commencement will not be viable based on current state guidelines and county health directives.

For undergraduate and master’s students, we will gather for a virtual event on December 11 at 10:00 am. The doctoral hooding ceremony will be in January (date TBD). We have asked our May 2020 graduates to join you at these events. As you likely know, our May class did not have any real ceremony because of the rapid pace of change last Spring. So, we will welcome them with open arms to our December event, and celebrate with them your collective achievements.  You share a common bond and set of experiences that are truly unique. The year 2020 brought social, cultural, and economic challenges that will never be forgotten.

We will work with student leaders on plans, and we will communicate more on these ceremonies in the weeks to come. Please know how much we all wish we could shake your hands, hand you diplomas, and watch you cross (sometimes with a step, spin, dance, or a backflip) our stage. We will do all we can to make this moment as special as possible. You have certainly earned that.

Thank you, and Go Spartans!