Virtual Commencement Watch Party Saturday Celebrates the Class of 2020

Thursday, September 17, 2020
100th Commencement Ceremony Rockhurst University

It’s been a long time coming for the graduates of the Class of 2020, but on Saturday, they finally get their time to shine during the annual commencement ceremony.

And it will be a unique one — not just because of the COVID-19 pandemic that required it to be a virtual gathering, but also because this year marks the 100th commencement ceremony in Rockhurst’s history.

The link to this year’s virtual commencement site will officially open at noon on Saturday, with a Facebook watch party to follow at 1 p.m. Members of the University community, including graduates, their families, and faculty and staff, are invited to celebrate this historic class together, virtually, as close to 700 undergraduate and graduate degrees are conferred and honors, including the Senior Gold Medal for the top-performing undergraduate students, are announced.

While obviously different from the typical commencement, those watching the live broadcast will have an opportunity to share support, congratulations and maybe even some virtual air-horns via Facebook in real-time.

They’ll also hear a special address from University President the Rev. Thomas B. Curran, S.J., and, in keeping with tradition, from a graduating student offering a reflection of their experience.

That speaker, Nicole Floistad, says in her address that she asked her fellow classmates what they will take with them as they graduate. Despite the hardships faced by this particular group of graduates, they didn’t want to be defined by the things that didn’t go as planned.

“Not a single person mentioned the dreaded 8 a.m. classes we all suffered through freshman year, the countless nights we didn’t sleep because of a paper or test, or even COVID cutting our last semester short,” she said. “I heard about the community, sense of family, and friends for a lifetime we made here; the formative, transformational, indescribable, and blessings in disguise that we experienced here; and the opportunities that pushed us to become our best selves. These are the moments and memories I want all of us to take with us.”