Spring 2021 commencement ceremonies will be virtual

Veronica Wernicke, News Editor

Chancellor Jose V. Sartarelli announced in a recent email that the spring 2021 commencement ceremonies will be held virtually. 

Due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, UNC Wilmington (UNCW) will once again hold graduation virtually. Graduation will be held on May 8 at 10 a.m. 

“We had hoped to hold UNCW’s spring ceremonies in person, but ongoing pandemic conditions prompted us to reconsider those plans. Although the vaccination rollout is gaining momentum in North Carolina and across the nation, current projections indicate that a significant portion of the population may not be fully vaccinated by early May,” wrote Sartarelli in the email.

The size of Trask Coliseum, where graduation typically takes place, is not large enough to accommodate graduating students and their families, especially under the state’s current gathering restrictions. Currently North Carolina limits indoor gatherings to 10 and it is unclear how these numbers will change as the vaccines continue to be rolled out. 

Students will still have their name read virtually and shown on a slide in addition to the school they are graduating from, their degree and any honors or distinctions they have received while at UNCW. 

Graduates’ cap and gown will be sent directly to graduates homes, and they will also receive a commencement box with various goodies if they fill out the proper form before April 26. 

As May 8 gets closer, future UNCW graduates will receive further information via email. Additional information regarding spring commencement can also be found on the commencement website.

“We held the university’s first-ever virtual commencement in December, and the ceremonies went very well. We look forward to building on that model this spring,” wrote Sartarelli in the email.