Graduation and Commencement

March 27, 2020

Dear Students, Faculty, Staff and Friends,

As we continue to navigate through this unprecedented time in our country, the topic of spring commencement has been of great concern, especially to our graduating class. I thank you all for your patience as we have worked to find a way to keep our community safe, while still honoring our graduates in the way they so deserve.

To ensure that we took every necessary measure and explored every option, I asked the Commencement Committee to offer their recommendations on proceeding with this semester’s ceremony. After careful consideration and with the utmost concern for the health and well-being of our graduates and their families, UIW has made the difficult decision to cancel the Spring 2020 commencement ceremony. The event, which was to be held on Saturday, May 9 at the Freeman Coliseum, will now take place online in a virtual format in May.

The time and date of the virtual ceremony will be shared as soon as possible. Graduates who were scheduled to participate in the May ceremony will also be offered the opportunity to take part in our December commencement ceremony. In the meantime, our teams are working to develop additional opportunities to recognize our Spring 2020 graduates’ achievements this fall, and the Commencement Committee will share those with you in the coming weeks.

Graduating Cardinals, all of us at UIW share in your disappointment. You have displayed tremendous patience over the last weeks as we have worked to find answers and solutions for you. Unfortunately, this is an issue now facing virtually every university or college in the nation. There is nothing we would love more than to see every member of the Class of 2020 cross the stage. But, we have turned this disappointment into our resolve to make this moment as special for you as we can.

Details regarding caps, gowns, special initiatives, etc., are forthcoming. Announcements will be shared as information becomes available. If you have any questions about the May 2020 commencement ceremony, please email Our teams will compile your questions into an FAQ that will be shared at a later date.

Although the past few weeks have been extremely challenging, you have found ways to come together and be resilient, even in the most disappointing of circumstances. I am proud of your spirit, resolve and compassion.

Praised be the Incarnate Word!


Thomas M. Evans, PhD

View May 2020 Commencement FAQs