CHESTER, Pa. (CBS) — Widener University is offering graduates two in-person graduation options to choose from this May. Students graduating from the university’s Main Campus in Chester can choose to walk at a mini ceremony format under a tent at Memorial Field or a drive-thru in front of the historic Old Main administration building.
Graduates who do not want to travel to campus or attend either in-person ceremonies can participate in virtual commencement content through Widener’s website.READ MORE: Philadelphia Students To Remain Virtual As Mediation Process Between School District, Teachers' Union On Phased Reopening Nearing End
“In order to meet the individual needs of graduates and their guests, we are excited to offer two commencement options for the first time in university history, to honor graduates and recognize their achievements while maintaining safety as our top priority,” said Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Chief of Staff Katie Herschede, who is co-chairing commencement with Director of University Events Amy Pecsi. “Graduates may choose the format that works best for them and for their families. We made this decision after carefully listening to graduates and receiving input from more than 1,200 of them through graduate surveys and focus groups. Our commencement options reflect what students asked for, while fully respecting the significance and severity of the pandemic.”
The in-person ceremonies will honor both 2020 and 2021 graduates earning their undergraduate and graduate degrees.
The university says safety is the top priority and measures will be implemented for both ceremony types — including extensive cleaning and sanitization between ceremonies, hand sanitizer stations located throughout ceremony facilities, electronic touchless ticketed entry, ceremony size limits, masking and social distancing.READ MORE: Delaware County Company Develops 'The Hurricane,' Device Using UVC Technology To Kill Coronavirus
A series of mini-ceremonies will take place on Wednesday, May 12 through Saturday, May 15, lasting about 45 minutes each.
Graduates who choose to attend will be assigned a date and time for their celebration. Each ceremony will involve 100 or fewer graduates with two guests per graduate under a tent.
The drive-thru option will be available Tuesday, May 11 and Wednesday, May 12, and graduates will also be assigned a date and arrival window time. Each graduate is allowed up to two vehicles during their arrival time.MORE NEWS: Fourth Bucks County Resident, Raechel Genco, Arrested For Alleged Role In Capitol Riot
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