West Texas A&M University’s May commencement ceremony will still go on, but only in a virtual sense.
As response to the COVID-19 pandemic still demands social distancing and avoidance of large groups, WT has moved its May 9 commencement ceremony online to wtamu.edu/commencement. The exercises will be available for viewing between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. May 9. The ceremonies will recognize about 1,600 undergraduates and graduate students.
Those delivering brief remarks via video will include Elaine Mendoza, Chairman of the Board of Regents for the Texas A&M System; John Sharp, Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System; Wendler, delivering a brief commencement address; Dr. Neil Terry, Provost/Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs; Ronnie Hall, Executive Director of Alumni Relations; and Colton Bourquin, Student Body President.
“We are proud of our Class of 2020 for excelling, particularly in these unprecedented times, and though world events have made this necessary, we look forward to celebrating commencement with our graduates in this new way,” WT President Dr. Walter Wendler said. “We have worked diligently to make the virtual program special and meaningful.”
Degrees will be awarded to all qualified students, and diplomas and graduate pins will be mailed. Students will receive an email from the dean’s office of the college from which they will graduate to confirm their mailing address and ensure that diplomas are mailed out correctly.
May 2020 graduates also will be invited to walk in the December 2020 commencement exercises.
The online commencement landing page will have links to each college, all of which will have a list of their graduating students. The deans of each college will offer brief remarks by video on their respective pages, as well.
Students are encouraged to submit a three-minute video allowing them to thank family, friends, faculty and coaches for their support; approved videos will be linked to from each college’s commencement page. Instructions to submit videos will be emailed to students soon.
“We hope that these measures will still convey our deepest respect for our May 2020 graduates’ accomplishments,” Wendler said. “Their academic accomplishments are a source of great pride for them, their families and the University as a whole.”