Once again, I would like to congratulate you as you clear the final hurdle in earning your Wildlife Biology degree, and I hope that this email finds you safe and sheltered during these trying times.
I write to you today to inform you that, given the developments in Maine and the nation in the past week in response to COVID-19, a May Commencement ceremony as we had initially planned is no longer feasible. As you can imagine, this was not an easy decision, as we have watched you grow as learners, pre-professionals, and citizens over these years, and wanted to celebrate your success alongside you on May 9.
Then again, this is Unity College, and while many see nothing but barriers, we find a path forward with a new set of events to celebrate YOU:
May 8 – Virtual Awards Recognition on Unity.edu
On May 8, Dr. Erika Latty, Zach Falcon, and I will host a Virtual Awards Recognition where we will honor Flagship graduates who have excelled in a number of categories that encompass academics, athletics, and overall student success. As we have in the past, a faculty or staff member will discuss the criteria for the award and speak about each recipient’s achievements as a student at Unity College.
May 9 – Virtual Recognition on Unity.edu
While we will not be celebrating in-person on May 9 at 90 Quaker Hill Road, we will host a Virtual Recognition at 11 a.m. on May 9 to honor you. We will send your regalia and diploma covers prior to this virtual celebration, and encourage you to take a photo of yourself in your regalia and proudly displaying your diploma cover. Send your photos to us so we may include them in this virtual observance of your achievements. You, your family, and friends can watch this event and communicate with each other and us throughout the ceremony.
August 1 – Commencement at Unity College
Then on August 1, barring any unforeseen developments with COVID-19, we will host an in-person commencement here at 90 Quaker Hill Road similar to our traditional May Commencement for any graduate who can attend. This event will also include the Awards Ceremony and will be streamed live, as we always do for our commencement ceremonies. If there are any changes to this date, we will notify you all by June 15.
December 18 – December Graduation at Unity College
As a third option, for those unable to attend the August 1 Commencement, we invite any 2020 graduate who would like to march at December Graduation to join us on December 18 at the Unity College Flagship for a celebration.
While most colleges and students will make lemonade when handed lemons, I know that you are different. When life hands you lemons, you go foraging to see what else you can find, to create something truly spectacular. That’s what I plan on doing, and I hope you all join me.
Dr. Melik Peter Khoury