I am very disappointed to announce that we will not be able to hold this year’s undergraduate, graduate, School of Law and Dougherty Family College (DFC) commencement ceremonies in May as scheduled. We of course were hoping to avoid this outcome, but the simple fact is that our community, nation and society remain in an uncertain situation with the COVID-19 pandemic. If there was ever a time to work together for the common good, it is now. As we have stressed many times, your health and safety are our top concerns, and it would not be in anyone’s best interests to continue with our May commencement plans at this time.

We are actively discussing with students, faculty and administrators alternative ways to celebrate this year’s graduates. We are looking at all options, including holding in-person ceremonies at a later date.

Many of you will have questions about these plans and I ask for your patience as we work out the many details involved. I assure you, however, that we have a team working very hard on this, and we will be back in touch as soon as possible.

This is not the spring semester any of us were anticipating at St. Thomas. I know that the feeling of loss is especially hard for seniors, law students, graduate students and second-year DFC students who were expecting to walk across the stage this May to receive their degrees.

I give you my commitment that we will do everything in our power to make sure our graduates receive the recognition they so richly deserve after years of hard work and have an opportunity to celebrate with their classmates and families. Additional updates will be provided as they are available.

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