Spring 2021 Commencement
Full gallery of photos coming soon. Also, check our Facebook page for a sample!
May 8, 2021
Lehigh Valley Campus, outdoors
Keynote Speaker: Suresh Nair, MD, Physician-in-Chief of Lehigh Valley Cancer Institute and 1982 alumnus
Student Marshal: Savannah Malesky, ‘20 Corporate Communication
Campus Marshal: Roger Egolf, Ph. D., Associate Professor of Chemistry
Faculty Marshal: Beth Michalec, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Communication
Ticketing: 2 guest tickets will be issued to each graduate (Ticketing information to follow)
The event will be live streamed to allow friends and family of the graduates to join the celebration! In addition, a University-wide virtual commencement ceremony featuring all campuses will held on May 9, 2021 at 6:00 p.m.
Graduates: please follow instructions in the email from MarchingOrder via [email protected] to ensure your information is correctly represented at the virtual ceremony (including your name, degree and major).
Given the COVID-19 pandemic, the health and safety of our students, guests and campus communities remains of paramount importance. Each ceremony will follow requirements for masking, physical distancing, and state and federal guidelines for gatherings.
All students, guests and employees are required to wear face masks and maintain physical distancing from others to help minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19.
We are prepared to adjust plans, including shifting to a fully virtual ceremony, if needed, based on changing virus conditions or changes in public health guidelines.
Graduating students may access the University’s on-demand testing process for COVID-19 if they wish to be tested prior to the commencement ceremony.
Please check back for updates on this page including ticketing information, report times, graduation requirements, ADA information, and more.
For a list of campus-specific COVID-19 resources, visit: https://virusinfo.psu.edu/resources/commonwealth-campus-resources/.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the plans for spring 2021 commencement ceremonies at Commonwealth Campuses?
To recognize the many accomplishments of our graduates, each Penn State Commonwealth Campus location is hosting its own ceremony or ceremonies to honor their graduates and will be sharing detailed ceremony information directly with graduating students. As it becomes available, more information about each campus’ ceremony also will continue to be shared on this website.
Will masks and physical distancing be required at commencement ceremonies?
Yes. The health and safety of students, their families, and campus communities is Penn State’s priority, and each ceremony will follow requirements for masking, physical distancing, and state and federal guidelines for gatherings. All students, guests and employees across each campus are required to wear face masks and maintain physical distancing from others to help minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19. In addition, all guests who will be attending an in-person commencement ceremony are expected to take health and safety precautions while traveling and during commencement weekend.
Can graduating students get tested for COVID-19 before commencement?
Yes. To support the health and safety of graduating students and their guests, students who would like to be tested for COVID-19 before participating in an in-person commencement ceremony will be able to do so through the University’s on-demand testing process at each campus. At the Commonwealth Campuses, testing processes are defined for each campus and are typically administered by the local health center or other designated area. Specific details and hours can be obtained on campus through the campus Student Affairs office. To learn more, a list of campus-specific COVID-19 resources is available.
Will there be a virtual ceremony for graduates and guests who are not able to attend or prefer to participate online?
Yes. To help make commencement celebrations accessible to all our graduating students and their friends and families, Penn State is planning a University-wide virtual ceremony for students and guests who are unable to attend or prefer to participate online. The University-wide virtual ceremony celebrating graduates from all campuses will be streamed on May 9 at 6 p.m. at virtual.commencement.psu.edu. The virtual ceremony will celebrate all undergraduate and graduate students at Commonwealth Campuses, University Park and World Campus — including those also attending an in-person ceremony — and will feature the conferral of degrees, induction into the Alumni Association and more.
Do I need to do anything in advance to be included in the University-wide virtual ceremony?
All graduating students will be celebrated during the virtual ceremony — including those also attending an in-person ceremony — and will have personalized digital slides available. Students will need to follow instructions in the email from MarchingOrder via [email protected] to make sure your information is correct on the slide for virtual ceremonies. All digital slides will include each student’s name, degree and major.
I graduated in Spring 2020 and I’m still waiting for an in-person celebration. When will that occur?
Virtual ceremonies served as a first step in recognizing the academic achievements of members of the spring class of 2020 during this global pandemic. In partnership with the Penn State Alumni Association and in consultation with alumni representatives, the University is planning for a special weekend in spring 2022 to celebrate the members of the spring class of 2020. More information and a specific date will be forthcoming as the University continues to develop plans to welcome recent graduates and their families back to campuses next spring with a variety of activities and events. In addition, Commonwealth Campuses will communicate specific plans for their alumni.