College announces Commencement plans for Class of 2021 and Class of 2020

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Wednesday, March 17th, 2021

A message from Michael Molla, President, Pennsylvania College of Art Design:

March is a month of change and transition — we can feel the arrival of spring in the air as we shift into a new season and consider the approaching end of this academic year. This time prompts us also to think about the end of the semester and how we will be able to mark our milestones together.

As our experience has shown us, the coronavirus continues to impact the health of all of us, around the globe. Optimistically considering the importance of the vaccination options, we can begin to imagine a better normal that allows greater human-to-human connections.

Understanding that the pandemic will continue to require us to do things differently for the near future, I engaged a team of students, alumni, faculty, and staff to gather collectively last fall. Their task was to consider how and best predict when, we can mark the transition of our seniors on May 7, and also to plan for a full in-person commencement experience that brings our community, families, friends, and graduates together.

As such, I am pleased to share the plans of the Class of 2020 and the Class of 2021 Commencement & Celebration Committee, including activities for both this Spring and the Fall, 2021.

Spring 2021

  • An in-person “Senior Send-Off” for each academic department (May 7 morning)

  • A featured exhibition of works from the Class of 2021 in the Main Gallery

  • A printed exhibition catalog for the Class of 2021

  • A digital exhibition portal for the Class of 2021

  • A collaborative Virtual Celebration and Honoring of the Class of 2021 (May 7 afternoon)

Fall 2021

  • A special celebratory In-person October Commencement for the Class of 2021 and the Class of 2020

  • The launch of PCA&D Inaugural Homecoming Weekend

The Committee recommended a joint commencement and celebration for the Classes of 2021 and 2020 this October. This joint occasion will be included in a signature PCA&D Homecoming weekend. Additional information on dates, venues, and activities will be shared soon.

To mark and celebrate the Class of 2021’s Gallery Exhibition and the formal completion of the academic year, we will host a series of activities and broadcasts called the May Moment: 2021. This will include an in-person/virtual senior send-off for graduates by department, a multimedia celebration of students’ experiences and accomplishments, and the formal conferral of degrees through a broadcast from President Molla.