Postpone UB 2020 Commencement Instead of Doing it “Virtually”

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In the wake of the international crisis caused by SARS-CoV-2, everything is getting cancelled or postponed. I don’t think that there is much to elaborate on regarding that because we are all living through these trying times and our plans have been affected in some capacity. Not to mention, some of us are getting sick with this virus, or have loved ones who are sick. This is no joke, and the class of 2020 knows that. 

On April 6th, 2020, about 6 weeks away from when the University at Buffalo’s commencement ceremonies would have taken place, UB’s administration made a decision that would negatively impact the lives of its youngest graduates - deciding to: 

a. Not postpone graduation/commencement ceremonies 

b. Hold the commencement ceremonies online “virtually” in May

c. Plan “to recognize and celebrate UB’s Class of 2020 during an on-campus CELEBRATION sometime later in the year”

The Class of 2020 understands the circumstances right now, especially in New York State, but this is unacceptable. Until we are provided clarity, celebration is NOT commencement.

Since March, the world has witnessed the postponing and cancelling of its most prominent establishments during this unprecedented time: Professional sports leagues, world-renowned artist’s concerts, and even Disney are on halt right now. None of these establishments have adopted any ideas of going “virtual” - they are just simply postponing or suspending services until the world can get back on its feet.

With that being said, the Class of 2020 urges you, Dr. Satish K. Tripathi and the UB Administration, to reconsider this decision for the sake of celebrating the four years of blood, money, sweat, and tears we invested in completing our undergraduate education in the correct manner of holding a true commencement.

We do not need commencement in May and we do not deserve or need to have commencement online or “virtually”. Many of us, like myself, are first-generation college graduates and this achievement is life-changing in so many ways - it must be executed accordingly, when the time is right.

The Class of 2020 needs your support at this time. Please sign this and help our voices get heard by the administration... we worked too hard for it to end like this. 

Thank you. Stay safe and stay healthy. 

We are AmeriCANS and we WILL make it through this. 

Horns Up Forever.

- UB’s Class of 2020