FSU to hold in-person commencement for Spring 2021 graduates

Florida State University will hold in-person commencement ceremonies for its Spring 2021 graduates, President John Thrasher announced Thursday.

“This has been an extraordinary year in many ways, and I’ve been so impressed by your resilience and flexibility,” Thrasher wrote in a letter to graduates. “You have worked through some tremendous challenges in order to graduate. That’s why I’m thrilled to announce that Florida State University will celebrate this incredible milestone with in-person commencement ceremonies in April.”

The university will hold 11 smaller commencement ceremonies at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center over the course of two weekends: Saturday, April 17-Sunday, April 18, and Friday, April 23-Saturday, April 24. Thrasher will serve as the featured speaker at each ceremony. A schedule of ceremony dates and times for each college and department is available at commencement.fsu.edu.

“We plan to retain many elements of our traditional ceremonies while taking the necessary steps to ensure that we can gather in the safest way possible,” Thrasher said.

The smaller ceremonies will allow for proper social distancing for graduates who will be seated on the Civic Center floor, as well as four guests per graduate in the audience. Masks will be required for all graduates and guests. A condensed program will feature the reading of graduates’ names while they walk across the stage. Handshaking, the hooding of doctoral students and other physical contact will not be permitted. Professional photographers will document the event.

The Tucker Civic Center also will be the site of the College of Law graduation on April 25. FSU-Panama City will host its graduation ceremony at 6 p.m. (CST) April 24 at Tommy Oliver Stadium in Panama City. Ticket information will be sent to Panama City graduates.

Due to the unpredictable nature of the pandemic, plans are subject to change. University officials will continue to monitor the situation and follow the guidance of federal, state and local officials.

It will be the first time since December 2019 that FSU will hold in-person commencement. FSU also is planning in-person ceremonies for its spring, summer and fall 2020 graduates who were recognized in virtual ceremonies due to the pandemic. More details will be released in the coming weeks.

All ceremonies will be livestreamed for those unable to attend in person. For more information, visit commencement.fsu.edu.