UC Santa Barbara Plans Virtual Graduation Ceremony
Past UCSB Commencement Ceremony (Photo: UCSB)
By edhat staff
UC Santa Barbara (UCSB) is planning to hold a "virtual ceremony" for graduation as other local colleges follow suit due to the coronavirus pandemic and social distancing orders.
UCSB Chancellor Henry T. Yang posted a letter to students announcing the postponement of annual commencement ceremonies which were scheduled to take place in June.
A virtual ceremony is scheduled for the second weekend of June with an in-person ceremony to be scheduled when it is safe to do so.
"We know that this decision is a tremendous disappointment to our graduates, who for years have devoted themselves to reaching this milestone and have looked forward with great anticipation to the celebration that would mark their academic accomplishment," wrote Yang. "While some may believe our situation will abate within a few months, the public health information we are receiving suggests the rapid and evolving nature of COVID-19 makes the risk to our community too great to allow large gatherings such as our UC Santa Barbara Commencement."
Westmont College has also postponed commencement that was originally scheduled for the weekend of May 1 and is looking for a new date to celebrate 2020 graduates.
On Tuesday, Santa Barbara City College (SBCC) Superintendent-President Uptal Goswami announced an in-person commencement ceremony will not take place.
"All indications from our Governor and Public Health experts are that the restrictions on large gatherings will continue for some time. State Chancellor Oakley has advised Community Colleges to cancel or postpone in-person commencement activities. Like you, I was looking forward to celebrating this important milestone in person," wrote Goswami.
A virtual commencement is planned for SBCC graduates on May 8, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.