Dear UMaine community,

We are writing today to provide an update on the University of Maine’s plans to hold an in-person Commencement ceremony for our 2020 graduates after the postponement in May due to the coronavirus pandemic. Following our virtual Class of 2020 Recognition Week at the end of the spring semester, a survey of this year’s graduates confirmed great interest in returning to campus this fall for an in-person ceremony. The survey reaffirmed our commitment to hold an in-person ceremony for 2020 graduates in accordance with federal and state health and safety guidance, and we began to plan accordingly.

Our fall 2020 plans to return to campus are impacted by ongoing limits on large gatherings due to the pandemic. Those health and safety restrictions are now requiring UMaine to reconsider plans for holding 2020 Commencement ceremonies this fall. 

We continue to be mindful of the need to balance the health and well-being of our community with the joyful recognition of our students’ academic aspirations and achievements. We understand and share the disappointment of our graduating students and their thousands of family members, friends, colleagues and other supporters who were looking forward to the traditional in-person commencement this fall. 

The UMaine Commencement Committee will now turn its attention to May 2021 to explore ceremonies at the end of the spring semester to help ensure that our 2020 graduating students receive the recognition and celebration of their achievements they so deserve, while also making preparations to celebrate and recognize our May 2021 graduates. We look forward to seeing as many of our 2020 graduates back on campus when it is safe for all of us to gather again. We will continue to communicate plans and details as they become available. Until then, be well. 

With warmest regards

UMaine Commencement Committee