Point University to hold virtual graduation

Published 8:45 am Friday, May 1, 2020

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For most states, the middle of March is when COVID-19 started to make life change. The virus made schools close down and go to online-only teaching, hoping that they would be able to reopen by the end of the semester.

While some states are starting to reopen, school events are still canceled, which includes graduations.

Since its commencement ceremony will not be able to take place in person, Point University’s administration had to figure out another way to celebrate the commencement.

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“For a few weeks, we were hoping that there was some way that we could come together for graduation,” Stacey Bartlett said. “But the more we looked at it, we felt for the safety and health of our students, faculty and staff and their families that we could really not host a large gathering.”

Point’s graduation is set for May 2 at 11 a.m. EST. The 2020 class of 206 graduates, which is 79 more students than last years’ class, will have a virtual graduation ceremony. It will be broadcast on Facebook and YouTube.

With a virtual commencement, making sure all of the pronunciation, spelling and degrees are extremely important, as students can fill out the information at their actual graduation. Making sure that information is right was the main focus when putting together the commencement video.

“You can’t have any kind of spelling or audio error,” Bartlett said. “We are really sad we couldn’t come together and celebrate these students, so the best that we can do is to try and make this the best virtual graduation possible. There were just so many people involved to make it a really amazing product.”

The Skyhawks administration is trying to make the ceremony as normal as possible. The ceremony will start with a welcome by Point University President Dean Collins, followed by a prayer by the Dean of Biblical Studies Wye Huxford.

The ceremony will also have two guest speakers. The first speaker is Louie Giglio, who is the pastor of Passion City Church, which is a church located in Atlanta. The other is Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy.

“We’re really excited that both of them gave us their time and to make this graduation extra special for our students. We’re really thankful for that,” Bartlett said.

After both speakers talk, slides of the 206 seniors will be shown, giving their name, degree and college, alongside a picture they submitted.

Point University will also welcome back all graduating students to walk at the 2020 graduation in December.

“We really want to have a special time to celebrate them during that commencement, so those who can and want to return can also walk in that graduation,” Bartlett said.