Final year UoB students have been invited to a ‘virtual celebration event’ before their real graduation

It’s the zoom pub quiz with Hugh Brady you have all been waiting for

Final year students in the graduating Class of 2020 have been invited to a virtual celebration event before they can officially graduate in person.

In an email sent out to finalists today Professor Sarah Purdy, Pro Vice-Chancellor of Student Experience, confirmed that the celebrations will be held by each faculty throughout July and last one hour.

Purdy stressed: “These will not be a replica nor a replacement for your graduation, and we know many of you will not have had your degree awards by the time of these events.”

“We are very aware that, for you, the Class of 2020, the celebrations with friends, course mates and staff will have a very different feel. This is not the way we wanted your time with us to end, and we know how important our graduation ceremonies are to give you a chance to celebrate your achievements with your supporters.

“We promise you that we will offer that opportunity to graduate in person here in Bristol at a future date when it is safe to do so but for now, we’d like to update you on our plans to celebrate your time with us virtually.”

Finalists have been told to “save the date” for their celebration event, running between 10am-11am.

Finalists have already been celebrating virtually by photoshopping dissertation hand-in pictures as if they were in Bristol. Photo credit: Mary

Sophie, a final year international English student told the Bristol Tab that she is glad the uni is holding some kind of celebration: “After seeing the email from the uni about ‘Celebration Ceremonies’ it makes sense that it’s not safe to have everyone gather for a proper graduation ceremony.

“I’m glad that they are going to be recognising the massive achievements finalists have made over the past three or four years, especially under our particular circumstances. Our class in particular had so many obstacles in our way from strikes to Coronavirus (keeping in mind as an English student, I went from having eight contact hours a week to 90 minutes but continued to pay international fees, leaving me feeling a bit bitter).

“I appreciate any recognition really. I think it’s important to celebrate academic achievements so students should find other ways to celebrate with their families and friends.”

Purdy said that the university are “committed” to invite all finalists back to attend a graduation ceremony, but cannot currently confirm any re-scheduled dates due to “ongoing uncertainty on when mass gatherings will be allowed”.

Finalists were also told that they will receive their awards and certificates prior to their ceremonies: “You do not need to have attended a graduation ceremony to have these.”

Students have been told to anticipate their graduation ceremonies to happen in 2021.

Feature image credit: Mary, @mazza.h99

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