DSU to hold in-person commencement ceremonies in May
The state of Delaware has approved Delaware State University’s plan to hold its first in-person commencement exercises since December 2019.
It will include all graduating students from the spring, summer and fall semesters of 2020 as well as the spring of 2021. Each graduate will be allotted two tickets for their commencement.
In accordance with the state’s COVID-19 guidelines, the university will hold six separate ceremonies, a morning celebration for master’s and Ph.D. level candidates May 7 and a full-day celebration for undergraduates May 8. All guests must show a negative COVID-19 test taken no less than three days prior to the ceremony or show proof of a completed COVID-19 vaccination certification. All guests will be checked by a temperature screening upon arrival, and masks are to be properly worn at all times while on campus.
Noting the strong protocols and accountability that has shaped the campus since the start of pandemic, DSU President Tony Allen said, “There is nothing more central to what we do — or more important — than ensuring that our students complete their degrees and are prepared to pursue their wildest dreams.” Each ceremony will combine video and live presentations. There will also be a few surprise guests.
Ceremonies will be held as follows:
— 10 a.m. May 7: The School of Graduate, Adult and Extended Studies (Master’s and Doctorate) at the Tubman/Laws Residential Hall Courtyard
— 9 a.m. May 8: The College of Agriculture, Science and Technology at the Tubman/Laws Residential Hall Courtyard.
— 9 a.m. May 8: The College of Humanities, Education and Social Science at Alumni Stadium
— 1 p.m. May 8: The College of Business at Alumni Stadium.
— 1 p.m. May 8: The College of Health and Behavioral Sciences at Tubman/Laws Residential Hall Courtyard
— 4 p.m. May 8: The spring 2020 graduates at Alumni Stadium.
Harry L. Williams, the chief executive officer and president of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund and the former president of Delaware State University, 2010-17, will deliver the commencement address. The board of trustees will also confer the president emeritus title to Williams during the program.
As the CEO of the TMCF, he represents 47 public HBCUs graduating more than 300,000 students each year. He has created innovative partnerships for the HBCU community in the public and private sector. See more about TMCF at tmcf.org.
During his eight years as university president, Williams’ tenure included six years of record enrollment, the establishment of the Inspire Scholarship specifically Delaware students, the construction of an Optics research building, the launching of the university’s Early College High School and numerous other institutional growth accomplishments.
The 2020-21 Mr. and Miss DSU, Christian Chapman and Ashlee Davis, reflected the joy of senior class over the return to the in-person commencement ceremony.
“I’m excited — for the last four years my dream was to see my parents watching me march across the stage,” Chapman said. “Thinking that this was going to be virtual was breaking my heart, but now that we are going have out and in the open, I couldn’t be more ecstatic.”
“We didn’t expect to have this opportunity,” Davis said. “It is definitely exciting that we are going to have our family watch us graduate and experience this phenomenal achievement.”
All six ceremonies will be live streamed on DUS's YouTube channel.