COVID-19 Raises Concerns about 2020 Graduation

Adeli Arvizu, Reporter

The recent COVID-19 pandemic has left schools with no choice but to have their commencement ceremonies online or to completely cancel it. 

Many universities have abruptly canceled graduation ceremonies until the following year, according to U.S. News. This has left many alumni upset and angry considering the amount of time and effort they spent into their degrees. Students have signed petitions and protested to encourage their administration to create some form of ceremony to congratulate the graduating class of 2020.

For schools who have decided to hold graduation over Zoom, students have the option to invite loved ones to view the commemoration by tuning in to the platform. Schools that have announced the decision to host online graduations include UCF, MIT, UCLA, NZU, etc. 

Due to schools in Bakersfield being temporarily closed, graduation has also become a concern to students who expect to walk the stage this year. Bakersfield College’s commencement will no longer be held in Memorial Stadium. 

The BCSGA student president, Samantha Pulido, assured students via email that the administration is still working on a solution whether to also transition to virtual graduation or possibly reschedule. The situation is still unknown and with no updates concerning the matter.

Local High school graduations, so far, have not been affected and will continue as planned, for now. 

According to Erin Briscoe, the Public Information Officer at the Kern High school District, “As of right now, all schools in Kern County are hoping to reopen on [May 1], as KCSOS has recommended. […] As of right now, no graduations have been canceled. The Kern High School District is exploring contingency plans.”