Virtually Finished

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By Shelly Leachman, UC Santa Barbara

Concluding an academic year spent largely in remote learning mode due to the global coronavirus pandemic, UC Santa Barbara will award degrees to a combined 6,893 students, both undergraduate and graduate, for 2020-2021.

The campus again is unable to host its traditional ceremonies due to public health orders placing restrictions on large public gatherings, but there is an in-person event this year, modified to give graduates the flavor of commencement while observing COVID-safe practices.

The pomp and circumstance for the Class of 2021 begin June 7-10, when the Grad Walk(link is external) processional will allow graduating students to hear their names called, cross a stage and be photographed in front of the campus lagoon with loved ones looking on. Each graduate is allowed to have two accompanying guests. Graduates from the Class of 2020, who weren’t able to have an in-person experience due to the coronavirus pandemic, also were invited to join the Grad Walk. (Reservations have already closed for the on-site event, but all supporters are welcome to watch via livestream; a link will be available on June 7).

The official Class of 2021 online commencement ceremony(link is external) begins at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 12. A celebration for graduates will feature a live-streamed keynote graduation address by media executive, talk show host, author and philanthropist Oprah Winfrey.

Events on June 12 will also include multiple virtual celebrations arranged by the university’s schools, academic divisions and departments.

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FernaldPoint93108 Jun 08, 2021 12:50 PM
Virtually Finished

Virtual classes, virtual graduation yet full tuition.

ChemicalSuperFreak Jun 08, 2021 03:11 PM
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Virtual knowledge. As an employer I'd be hesitant to hire a chemistry undergraduate from the 2021 class as a lab tech, given their limited experience in an actual laboratory. Most of those students have never physically used NMR, mass spec, electrophoresis, etc. The last thing you need is damage to expensive instruments or injuries to personnel, which is more likely when someone has never even so much as loaded an actual sample on such equipment.

BobRoberts Jun 09, 2021 08:17 AM
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I am really hoping that during Oprah's speech she says, "You get a degree and you get a degree and you get a degree!"

sacjon Jun 11, 2021 11:05 AM
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JAMES B - and what's wrong with that? It's absolutely true.

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