May 6, 2020: Commencement Update

From: Michael S. Roth
Subject: Commencement Update
Date: May 6, 2020

Dear friends,

I begin by saying (again) how impressed I am, though not surprised, by how Wesleyan has stepped up in the face of current challenges. Ours is a strong and caring community indeed.

Every year we celebrate Wesleyan as an empowering community when we confer degrees upon graduating seniors. This year, at noon onSunday, May 24, the Commencement ceremony will be (as it must) virtual. We have arranged for the honorary degree recipients and our student speaker to deliver their remarks in a series of pre-recorded videos. My remarks and the conferral of degrees will be live.

We will miss the marching, the music, and the mortarboards in the air. In addition, the Binswanger awards will be presented on a future occasion. Nonetheless, there will be much to celebrate: primarily, the resiliency of our seniors and our graduate students who managed to hold the course in the face of unforeseen difficulties and disappointments. We will do our best to acknowledge them on May 24, and again next year at an in-person ceremony.

Normally at Commencement, celebrants sit close together on Andrus field, or up behind the podium on Denison Terrace or over on Foss Hill. May 24 will be different, but even if we sit far apart from one another, the power of togetherness will be strong.

A formal e-invitation to graduating students and their families and the Wes community is forthcoming.

Michael S. Roth