In-person, socially distanced graduation for FIU Class of 2020

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On September 25th, 2020, FIU Commencement sent out an email telling it's upcoming graduates that our graduation will be held virtually, just as it was in the spring and summer of 2020.

Here's the problem-- on September 28th, 2020, FIU External Relations sent out an email to the entire FIU community stating that they will be hosting socially distanced football games with priority seating for 1,900 students. 

We aren't asking to host an inside graduation that goes against CDC guidelines. We are simply asking for an accommodation. Why is it that 1,900 students can attend a football game, but seniors, most of them being first generation students (which FIU loves to pride itself in) cannot have an outdoor, socially distanced graduation. There are many healthy and safe alternatives for a graduation ceremony, we are simply asking that the appropriate offices and teams consider those alternatives.

Here are a few alternative which we have already discussed amongst graduating students (we are open to other ideas):

  1. Open air graduation in the Riccardo Silva Stadium
  2. Drive-In graduation which allows students to walk a stage, while parents view the graduation from the cars (for example, FIU's Homecoming Council will be hosting a drive-in for Panther's Got Talent )
  3. Pre-recording students receiving their diplomas, and editing the film together to create a graduation reel. 

Students want to help administration, we want to pitch ideas and make this come to life but we need to know that we are being heard. The biggest thing here is being heard. 

We want to reiterate that this does not have to be an unsafe event, we can give students the day that they've worked so hard for and still abide by guidelines.

Let's show the world that we are truly World's Ahead.