One of the University of Indianapolis’ most sacred celebrations, its commencement ceremonies, will be postponed University President Robert Manuel announced in an email to students on March 18. Manuel also formally announced that the rest of the current semester will be completed via online or alternative delivery methods.
The commencement ceremonies were scheduled to take place on May 2. Manuel said that the university will be trying to find a replacement for the ceremonies and that faculty, staff and alumni are committed to finding a way for graduating students to celebrate what they have accomplished at UIndy. Manuel said that UIndy will inform students when they have come up with an alternative.
The university decided to postpone commencement for two reasons, Manuel said. The first was because UIndy wanted students to be able to plan as early as possible, and by making the decision now, students will be able to adjust their plans. The second reason is due to Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb’s announcement on March 12 that social gatherings of more than 250 people would be banned, and President Donald Trump’s March 16 announcement of new CDC guidelines that recommended that social gatherings should be limited to 10 or less people for the next eight weeks as a result of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. The extended period of time would include UIndy’s commencement ceremonies, Manuel said.
Citing guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Indiana State Department of Health and the Marion County Public Health Department, Manuel also announced that the rest of the semester will be finished through online or alternate delivery methods. Manuel said that it was clear from the guidance that the social restrictions placed on the UIndy community are going to continue until at least the end of the semester, which makes it impossible for the university to call its community back to finish the semester in a face-to-face manner.
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