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SMWC 2020 Commencement and Ring Ceremonies Plans Announced

COVID-19 Updates, News | 05.18.2020

As we complete the semester, I am so heartened to see how resilient our students, faculty and staff truly are – living, learning and working in a fully virtual environment during a time of uncertainty. Each of you have embodied the values of Saint Mother Theodore Guerin in your actions and deeds, and I am proud of your accomplishments.

To our students, because many of you let us know that you truly want to be together to celebrate, we have been working diligently to find a way to recognize these momentous academic achievements in a manner that will allow you to share Commencement, Baccalaureate and Ring Day with each other and your families in a safe environment, while also providing a virtual experience for those unable to attend in person.

We gathered data from two student polls and reviewed information regarding in-person events large enough to accommodate our community in accordance with guidelines set by the State of Indiana for large group gatherings to best formulate a plan. Commencement, Baccalaureate and the Ring Ceremony have been rescheduled with great care, and the following information details the plans for each event.

Commencement, Baccalaureate and Ring Ceremony for graduates

Commencement will be held on Saturday, July 25, 2020 in Hamilton Arena of the Jeanne Knoerle Sports and Recreation Center. Commencement will be broken into two ceremonies, one for graduates of the campus program and another for graduates of Woods Online and master’s programs.

For Spring 2020 graduating ring recipients, we are combining a Ring Ceremony with the Baccalaureate Mass for all graduating campus, Woods Online and master’s students. We will incorporate the meaningful traditions of this ceremony, including co-presenters, into the liturgy as we work to celebrate each students’ accomplishments.

The July 25 schedule will be as follows:

  • 10 a.m. Commencement for graduates of the campus program
  • 1 p.m. Baccalaureate Mass and Ring Ceremony
  • 4 p.m. Commencement for graduates of the Woods Online and master’s programs

Graduates will be allowed up to eight guests for the Commencement events. The Commencement ceremonies will be available for viewing on the internet via livestream. The names of each graduate will be read aloud and photos of graduates unable to attend in person will be displayed during the ceremony to honor those participating virtually.

More information regarding the details of these events and a link to RSVP for the July 25 events will be shared through email by the Registrar’s Office.

Ring Ceremony for non-graduates

Spring 2020 non-graduate ring recipients are invited to attend a re-scheduled Ring Ceremony on Saturday, September 12, 2020. More information regarding the details about this Ring Ceremony will be shared through email by the Junior Class Advisor.

I look forward to celebrating with you – the Class of 2020 and the 2020 ring recipients – as we gather to honor you as is our tradition at The Woods!

Best regards,
Janet R. Clark, Ph.D.
Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs