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US colleges cancelling graduation over coronavirus fears

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The over-reaction is mind-blowing and deliberate – to undermine Trump’s re-election. That said, theur are some unintended benefits. Like this, no ugly leftist commencement speaker rants.

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US colleges cancelling graduation over coronavirus fears

By NY Post, 13, 2020:

Some colleges across the US have already canned graduation ceremonies because of the coronavirus pandemic — but dozens of others have left their students in limbo as they grapple with the difficult decision.

Many schools say they are following the advice from the Centers for Disease Control and state health officials who have recommended against large gatherings as the virus spreads. Governors in some states have called for limits on large events — including in New York, where Gov. Andrew Cuomo banned gatherings of more than 500 people.

While some schools say it’s too soon to tell where things will stand in two months, others, like Berea College in Kentucky, say they’re cancelling now so that parents won’t have to back out of travel plans at the last minute.

“[Students have] worked hard and we want to recognize all that they’ve accomplished. But we want to do that in a way that protects them and doesn’t jeopardize their safety,” school spokesman Tim Jordan said, adding the ceremony would be rescheduled “to a date when such a gathering can be conducted safely.”

Brigham Young University in Utah and the Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia have also cancelled ceremonies.

Cornell University is hopeful that commencement can go on as scheduled, but “it is unknown at this time whether that will be possible.” Florida International University is hoping for the same, but officials are working on “possible alternative plans.”

Iowa’s Grinnell College, which is sending students home this month, said there will be no “traditional” graduation ceremony. Officials at the private school of 1,700 students are mulling how to honor graduates in an online ceremony.

They are also considering bringing this year’s graduates back in 2021 for a two-in-one ceremony.

“We want to be celebrate and cherish our students,” dean and vice president for academic affairs Anne Harris said. “But we were following the logic: If we’re sending everybody out, why would we bring everybody back in?”

Wesleyan University in Connecticut is still weighing options. Senior Melisa Olgun, the first in her family to graduate from a US university, said she wants her mother to see her accept her diploma.

“This diploma is not just for myself,” said Olgu, whose parents are immigrants from Turkey. “It’s for my family, it’s for my parents. That ability to stand on that stage, to do that, is something I’ve been thinking of and dreaming of since I was a young girl.”

The decision is still blowing in the wind at Harvard University, which sent students home this week and is working on contingency plans, but said it’s too soon to make a decision.

Senior psychology student Tom Osborn’s family plans to come in from Migori, Kenya to attend the ceremony — and now he’s left unsure whether they should cancel their plans.

“It was going to be my family’s first time to campus. They were all excited,” Osborn said. “It’s unfortunate. I hope things will still work out.”

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