UW-Madison’s spring 2021 commencement ceremony will be in-person at Camp Randall Stadium instead of the virtual format it has taken the last two semesters due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The university plans to hold two ceremonies on Saturday, May 8. One will be for undergraduates, the other for graduate degree candidates.
However, the university is still taking precautions. According to a press release, no family members, friends or other guests will be allowed to attend. Instead, there will be a livestream available for anyone who wants to watch the ceremony.
The university says restrictions will allow for six feet of physical distancing between each graduate, and reduces the risk of families traveling from out of state.
Senior Eliciane Vallon says that while she might be a little hesitant about the idea, it's a nice surprise for seniors that have had their last year taken away by the pandemic.
“I’m excited for the ceremony, but I hope it’s done in a safe way. I think since we’ve been testing twice a week all semester that makes the ceremony more secure,” Vallon said. “Graduation is one of the things you look forward to most when you come to college, so I’m glad it’s happening.”
In order to enter the stadium, graduates will be required to wear a face mask and have a green Badger Badge to indicate that they have followed the university’s COVID-19 testing protocols.
“Our students have lost so much during this pandemic,” Chancellor Rebecca Blank said in the release. “While I am disappointed that it is still not possible for all our Badger family members to attend, I am very pleased that our graduates will again gather and celebrate together in our commencement tradition.”
While the upcoming ceremony is only for spring 2021 graduates, the university is planning an in-person celebration for those who graduated in the spring and fall of 2020. Details will be released as the plan comes together.