Because of the public health emergency created by the coronavirus pandemic, the University System of Georgia (USG) has informed USG institutions we will not be conducting graduation ceremonies this spring. As a result, the undergraduate ceremonies scheduled for May 6, 7 and 8, the associate degree ceremony on May 5, master’s ceremonies on various dates in May and the Ph.D. hooding ceremony on May 4 will not be held as scheduled.
Most important, students completing the requirements for graduation this semester will indeed graduate in May—all successfully completed degrees will be awarded—even though ceremonies celebrating the successful completion of degrees will not be held at this time. Graduating students will continue to receive information on the process of degree conferral from the University Registrar, and once all degree requirements are completed, transcripts will still show students have been awarded their degrees. We fully anticipate sending diplomas to graduating students at the end of the semester, as is normal practice.
To our graduating students, the university fully understands how profoundly disappointing this news is for you. I know how meaningful and important a commencement is, and we want to celebrate your achievements in an appropriate fashion. We are committed to finding ways to honor you at a time when large gatherings are once again safe. At that time, we will turn our attention to identifying where, when and how to do so, and we will communicate directly with graduates when the details become available.
The COVID-19 pandemic is disrupting almost every aspect of our lives, and we all know that large social gatherings—even events as significant as commencements—are just not feasible at this time. Georgia State University is fully committed to supporting our students to the greatest extent possible for the remainder of the semester, and to finding appropriate ways to honor our graduates and recognize their academic accomplishments when it becomes possible to do so. We deeply appreciate everyone’s cooperation and understanding as we endeavor to work through a very difficult situation.