Let Us Walk 2020

Let Us Walk 2020

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Michelle McDonald started this petition to Youngstown State Universitu Graduating class of YSU 2020

We have a problem here. Understandably we know you want to keep people safe, and we admire this. However, it has gotten to the point where it’s quite visible it has become a pick and choose game.  We are talking about Fall Commencement 2020, which was just announced this week as being virtual.

We have a problem with this.  For one, a lot more is open now, than there was in the Spring. Sure there’s been a lot canceled, like the fair. However, Rogers, the Canfield Swap Meet, along with various other events have remained opened. Some cities have opted out of Trick or treating, but not all of them.  Some classes are hybrid, but there are still classes on campus. Governor DeWine is one of the only governors letting fans go to NFL games, and our very own university is continuing on with basketball and football games.

Do you understand why we have a problem here?  Walking across a stage to get our diploma after 4 long hard years, is very much needed and deserved by all graduates. It is very unfair to allow athletes to play, to allow students to be in the dorms all sharing a bathroom, but not letting your proud, very deserving graduates walk.  Like everything else YSU has done to preserve safety, the ceremony can also be done with safety in mind. Limit the number of guests students can bring. Maybe break up the colleges so it’s not all done on the same day. Have everyone wear masks. We can do fist bumps instead of shaking hands. You can keep it virtual for those who don’t want to come, but please do not punish us all because commencement does not bring in as much revenue as sports.

This is a problem.  Walking is that final reward for all the blood, sweat, tears and the little bit of sanity we have sacrificed. Many students are the first in their families to walk, many students are non- traditionals who didn’t think they would ever graduate college. For the university to pick and choose events they decide to hold, and to cancel us walking across the stage is so unfair. I get it, life isn’t fair. But if the athletes can play, the kids can trick or treat, and people can go to NFL games. Then your graduates should be allowed to walk.

We have paid the university mentally, physically and financially for the last four years, and this is part of the package. Graduating, walking across that stage, is all part of our tuition package. It is our end game and it is monumental.  Do not take away our right to do so.

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