COVID-19 has robbed many people traditions and celebrations that typically come with graduating from high school and college. These celebrations are milestones in life that one will never be able to replicate. Now, with a decline in COVID-19 infections and increase in vaccine availability, one local college has announced they're going to hold an in-person commencement ceremony.

Utica College announced Wednesday that they will be holding their in-person commencement ceremony, but with a new twist. The ceremonies, yes plural, will be held on Saturday, May 15th, 2021 at The Adirondack Bank Center at the Utica Memorial Auditorium in Downtown Utica.

Due to COVID-19 regulations and capacity restrictions Utica College says they will hold three separate events throughout the day. The celebrations will be broken up by different types of "schools" at the college. College officials say the ceremonies will take place in the following manner.

  • The School of Arts and Sciences - 9AM
  • The School of Business and Justice Studies - 1PM
  • The School of Health Professions and Education - 5PM

All three of the ceremonies will be capped at a 400 person capacity and attendees will have to show a negative test result within 48 hours prior to the event or proof of full vaccination. All graduates, faculty, staff and attendees must wear face coverings, keep socially distanced and temperatures will be checked upon entering. Everyone attending must have a reservation and will be required to show ID, either UC ID or driver's license, upon entering.

Unfortunately, due to the capacity restrictions in place guests will not be able to attend the ceremony. However, the college will make accommodations for family and friends to watch a live stream of the event and they will make recorded versions of all ceremonies for future viewing. It's good that we are starting to see a sense of normalcy.

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