Purdue cancels commencement ceremonies amid coronavirus concerns

Purdue University will cancel its commencement ceremonies scheduled for May 15-17, according to a spokesman.

Posted: Mar 17, 2020 3:30 PM
Updated: Mar 17, 2020 7:07 PM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — Purdue University will cancel its commencement ceremonies scheduled for May 15-17, according to the registrar's office.

The university announced the move the day after it decided to transition to online learning for the rest of the semester, following recommendations from the CDC amid the coronavirus outbreak.

A virtual ceremony will still take place and all diplomas will be mailed. The registrar's office is encouraging students to still pick up gowns and take pictures with family members. Gowns will be mailed to candidates and will include postage for its return.

Purdue's six commencement ceremonies were scheduled to be held at the Elliott Hall of Music. The venue holds a little more than 6,000 people.

"We will provide an opportunity, if you so choose, for you to take part in a future traditional ceremony, and I promise you we are hard at work to create a special, memorable and fun virtual experience for you and your families as an option for this May. I know you are disappointed. So are we," Purdue President Mitch Daniels wrote in a letter to graduates.

As of Tuesday, there were 30 people diagnosed with the virus in Indiana with two reported deaths. No cases have been reported in Tippecanoe County.

Purdue classes will resume online March 23 following spring break. 

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