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College convocations for the University of Utah held in-person this year

May 6, 2021, 6:54 AM
In-person college convocations at the University of Utah are held through May 8th at Rice-Eccles St...
In-person college convocations at the University of Utah are held through May 8th at Rice-Eccles Stadium and Red Butte Garden. Commencement will be held virtually. Photo courtesy of University of Utah.

SALT LAKE CITY — For the first time since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, in-person college convocations at the University of Utah are happening. On Wednesday night the School for Cultural and Social Transformation ceremony took place at Red Butte Garden, a first for the University at the remote site.  Morgan Aguilar with University of Utah communications said the event went well.

“It was such a breath of fresh air to be able to celebrate and honor these students in person, these students who graduated of course under incredibly extraordinary challenges, they overcome so much. You could tell that for families and friends to be in attendance and actually to see their graduate walk across that stage. It was really emotional,” said  Aguilar.

The Red Butte site plays host to events through Thursday, Rice Eccles Stadium will host all events on Friday and Saturday. Convocations begin Thursday morning at 9 a.m. at both locations. The schools of Dentistry and Medicine and the Colleges of Law and Pharmacy will hold their ceremonies later in the month. Amphitheater and stadium events will be live-streamed for friends and family to watch.

Aguilar says of course in-person events in an age of coronavirus spread come with restrictions, with events limited to college faculty and the graduates themselves, as well as a small audience of family and friends. She says the people that are attending will be spaced appropriately according to health guidelines.

The 2021 General Commencement will be held virtually Thursday, May 6 at 7 p.m. and can be streamed at utah.edu/live. The keynote speaker will be Utah Jazz star, Donovan Mitchell.

A press release notes the broadcast will also feature congratulatory messages from academic deans, cameos from student hosts and many new, fun and “binge-worthy” elements. Graduates are encouraged to share memories of their time at the U and graduation photos on social media using #UtahGrad21.

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College convocations for the University of Utah held in-person this year