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In lieu of traditional graduation, summer grads get a week of celebrations

In lieu of traditional graduation, summer grads get a week of celebrations

Caravan, social media challenges keep grads pumped for commencement

July 28, 2020 at 1:35pm

FIU is pulling out the stops for 4,500 summer graduates with a week of events that includes a celebratory caravan, TikTok challenges and social media filters leading up to virtual commencement. 

“I congratulate our hard-working students on staying focused and overcoming what has been a unique few months of balancing schoolwork and the challenges brought on by this pandemic,” said FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg. “Now more than ever, we celebrate our graduates’ achievements. We are excited about their futures and look forward to welcoming them to the FIU alumni family.”

On Sunday, Aug. 2, at 2 p.m. the celebrations will culminate with virtual commencement ceremonies for each college. To make the ceremonies special, graduates can personalize the experience by recording a video message and creating a custom slide. The virtual ceremonies will feature all the graduates’ slides and will include remarks by President Rosenberg, selected commencement speakers, and each college or school’s dean. 

To get graduates in the celebratory mood, on July 24 FIU hosted its first Commencement Caravan. The first 500 graduates picked up special commencement goodie bags that included a souvenir tassel and some FIU swag. Roary was on hand to help celebrate.  

Panthers with the best-decorated cars are competing for prizes including a class ring, a diploma frame and extra tickets to a future traditional ceremony. 

FIU social media platforms also posted TikTok challenges that encourage graduates to create video duets that will make it appear like the cap is handed over by Roary or that President Rosenberg gives the graduate their diploma. The university is also promoting several filters on Instagram including a virtual grad cap and one that allows students to take selfies with campus backgrounds. 

Summer graduates, like Spring graduates before them, will have a second opportunity to experience graduation day when traditional university events resume.