Exploring commencement options

February 17, 2021

Tori Tragis

Dear UAF community,

As we look to this year’s commencement activities, I’ve asked the Commencement Committee to explore having in-person AND virtual options for UAF’s 2021 commencement. Several ideas are being explored. 

The options are based around our desire to celebrate graduates in a memorable way in person as well as to provide options for those who don’t feel safe attending in-person activities. One option we’re exploring includes a short ceremonial presentation followed by a “reverse parade” for graduates. In a reverse parade, graduates parade in their cars or on foot, while spectators safely cheer them on. The reverse parade concept has been used across the country to better enable COVID-19-safe practices, such as wearing masks and 6-foot physical distancing. While we do not have all of the details worked out on this option just yet, it is something we are looking into.

We are alternatively considering smaller, college-level commencement ceremonies, either on sequential days in the Patty Center (in masks and and with 6-foot physical distancing) or something similar. We are not able to use the Carlson Center this year.

Students who do not wish to or are unable to attend in person will be able to participate in an online ceremony, and we are exploring some enhanced options for virtual participation this year. 

I’d love to hear your feedback as we work together to plan an engaging celebration for our 2021 graduating class. Please send your thoughts and suggestions to uaf-commencement-team@alaska.edu

Thank you for choosing UAF.

— by Dan White, chancellor