Graduating seniors at the University of Minnesota will not get to mark their milestone moment with a walk across the stage in May, but they will get a “large, systemwide virtual celebration,” U President Joan Gabel said Friday.

The virtual commencement ceremony, which will be held May 16, will provide students with a “personalized experience,” Gabel said in a systemwide message to students. The theme for the celebration is “Hail to Thee,” a reference from Minnesota’s state song chosen to recognize students’ resilience through the COVID-19 pandemic.

More details will be shared in the coming weeks, Gabel said. Spring graduates will also have the opportunity to walk in an on-campus ceremony this fall.

“Commencement is a time when we come together in the presence of family and friends, and our faculty and alumni, to mark both a completion and a new beginning for our graduates,” Gabel said. “Our university family wants to do more, not less, to recognize you and your many achievements.”


Twitter: @ryanfaircloth