The Lowdown on 2021 Graduation Commencement


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The ongoing pandemic has detracted from the college experience considerably over the past year. In an effort to return some normalcy to the lives of students, those graduating this spring will have the option to participate in an in-person commencement ceremony. Although circumstances do not permit a traditional ceremony, students will have the opportunity to walk across the stage at Sangamon Auditorium from May 13 to May 14.

In order to participate, graduates must provide proof that they have received a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours of their stage experience. These tests must to be completed through the UIS COVID-19 testing center or an approved vendor.

Students will be able to bring up to four guests to enjoy the ceremony and festivities. Guests are not required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test. The ceremony will be live-streamed for guests unable to attend.

The Student Union will feature giveaways, lunch and a professional photographer on the days of the in-person commencement ceremony. Graduates are also asked to stop by the Student Union to record a short video statement, which will be shown afterward as part of a virtual celebration which will be available beginning at noon on May 15 via webcast or Facebook Live.

If you are a student graduating at the end of this Spring semester and are interested in taking part, a sign-up site will be open from March 29 to April 14. Check-in will take place in the lower level of the Public Affairs Center (PAC) building. Graduates will be required to wear their black cap and gown. Participants and their guests are asked to follow Restore Illinois guidelines.

Graduates that will not be able to attend the in-person commencement ceremony, a webcast or Facebook Live celebration will have an alternative option available at noon on May 15. Stay tuned for updates via email and the UIS commencement webpage.