September 30, 2020

2020 Commencement Announcement

Dear 2020 Graduates and Families,

As you know, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to seriously affect life and travel across the nation, and South Carolina is still experiencing higher infection rates than much of the country. We have put in place health and safety measures on campus, including keeping it closed to visitors, in a herculean effort to continue having an in-person, on-campus experience for most of our students this fall.

In this environment and with the ongoing uncertainties surrounding the spread of COVID-19, as well as our concern for you and your families’ safety, we have made the extremely difficult decision to cancel the Commencement ceremony we had planned for October 31. When we decided to cancel the May and August graduation ceremonies, we picked a fall date based on what we heard from many of you – the desire for an in-person (not virtual) ceremony with all of the normal accompanying festivities that didn’t conflict with other fall activities. At that time, we didn’t anticipate the continued effects that COVID-19 has had on our fall calendar.

Once again, we are so sorry that you have yet to experience this important tradition as planned.

Whatever we may plan as a replacement, we want it to be meaningful to you. We want to hear from you how we might create an event or recognition that will matter most to you. In the next couple of weeks, we will send 2020 graduates a survey with several options for you to consider, along with space for additional suggestions you may have. Please keep an eye out for this survey and consider sharing your thoughts.

There is nothing I can say that will properly convey how heartbreaking it is for your alma mater to delay your well-deserved recognition. I can only imagine your disappointment. Please know that this decision was not made easily, and was done so with the health and safety of our entire Furman family as a priority.

We look forward to engaging with you in many ways now and in the future, in whatever shape that may take as we navigate our way through this pandemic together. Please be well.


Elizabeth Davis