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Nontraditionally turning tassels doesn’t have to be a hassle

2020 graduates have multiple ways of celebrating the accomplishment of getting their diplomas. Photo courtesy of CU Denver News

Alternative ways to celebrate graduation

Graduation should be a time for celebration, a moment that people look forward to for years. With the current circumstances, graduates this semester will no longer have that traditional experience. Students therefore can get creative with how to celebrate in their own way, but CU Denver also took measures to plan several alternatives. 

As a result of the guidelines around social distancing, the university devised several alternative options to the traditional graduation ceremony. According to communication from Chancellor Dorothy Horrell, those graduating this semester can attend a virtual commencement ceremony on May 16. Graduates also have the ability to rent their regalia with shipping to and from home complimentary of the university. Another option includes attending a delayed graduation ceremony at the Colorado Convention Center in downtown Denver later in the year on December 11, only for students graduating in Spring 2020, or any ceremony in the future. 

Graduation happens with or without a formal ceremony though, so here are even more alternatives for enjoying that cherished moment. 

Send love 

Social distancing can make it difficult to maintain those close connections with friends or family. With many students cooped up inside or even forced to leave the Denver area, they might be missing those relationships. Sending friends all the photos, videos, memes, or sappy texts possible might help bridge the physical distance. 

Show gratitude 

Reach out to professors or other people who made an impact or helped along the way. Showing appreciation generates a certain pleasure of its own, and many of those connections might provide references for jobs or further educational opportunities.  

Host a virtual graduation party 

Plenty of folks pass their time in quarantine watching concerts or movies together online. Hit up close friends or family to enjoy a cozy night at home, watching favorite films or reminiscing on the last few years. 

Plan for next steps 

Whether already looking forward to another degree or excited to finish the first one, thinking about the next steps might help to redirect any stress about the future. Beginning a career in the middle of an economic downtown presents a challenge on its own, so figuring out what life will look like might require some time for reflection. 

Relax with the simple things 

With the emotional stress of the pandemic, and maybe returning home to family, celebrating alone with no fanfare would be an understandable choice. Stay home and watch movies, listen to music, read books, play video games, hang out with pets, and just enjoy the satisfaction of finishing all that hard work.  

No matter the manner of celebration, recognize the drive and determination needed to obtain a degree in spite of enduring challenges. After years of striving to meet deadlines and please others, take the time to appreciate the past, cherish the present, and look to the future. 

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