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Here's the plan for UA commencement

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The University of Arizona’s 2021 graduates and their families can look forward to safe in-person commencement ceremonies held from May 11 to May 18 this year.

Compared to last year’s fully-virtual ceremonies, this year will allow for students to RSVP up to four guests to attend in-person ceremonies at either Davis Sports Center, Arizona Stadium, Veterans Memorial Stadium or Phoenix Biomedical Campus depending on their college’s scheduled graduation. 

Heather Lukach is the assistant vice president of Presidential Events & University Ceremonies here at the university. She and her team have been planning for commencement since January in hopes of having it take place in person. 

“Commencement just could not happen the way we have traditionally planned it before [COVID-19], so we had to really think of ways that we could celebrate the students in a manner that they still had their moment,” Lukach said. 

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Ceremonies will be split by academic program or college. All ceremonies will be livestreamed and recorded for those who are unable to attend in person. 

“We’ve really partnered with all of the colleges, so basically it's not the traditional commencement but a combination of commencement and convocation,” Lukach said.

While speeches will be cut down for the sake of time, this year’s graduates will be able to walk across the stage with pride as they hear their names called. 

“This year we’re able to recognize our students individually, and that was something we were hearing loud and clear that was very important,” Lukach said. “We are going to be shortening it to keep the speeches to maybe the first 30 minutes and then the rest of the time as that moment for the students to be able to do their walk.”

Students who attend in-person commencement ceremonies are required to take a COVID-19 test through the university’s testing system within 72 hours of the ceremony. They must test negative or have an approved exemption (e.g. recent past infection or COVID-19 vaccination) to be allowed entry.

Students will not be required to test if they have had a positive antigen test result between 14 and 90 days prior to the ceremony or if two weeks has passed since their final dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Both instances require students to upload documentation to Campus Health for proof. 

To read FAQ's about this year’s graduation ceremony, students and families can check here for more information. 

Full schedule of ceremonies:

Monday, May 10

College of Medicine - Phoenix 

Location: Phoenix Biomedical Campus
Time: 8 a.m.

Tuesday, May 11

Honors College

Location: Arizona Stadium
Time: 7 p.m.

College of Law

Location: Davis Sports Center 
Time: 7 p.m. 

Wednesday, May 12

College of Medicine - Tucson 

Location: Davis Sports Center
Time: 9 a.m.

College of Medicine - Tucson (undergraduate), College of Public Health and College of Applied Science & Technology

Location: Arizona Stadium
Time: 7 p.m.

Thursday, May 13

Arizona Athletics - Student Athletes

Location: Davis Sports Center
Time: 9 a.m.

College of Education and College of Agriculture & Life Sciences

Location: Arizona Stadium 
Time: 7 p.m.

The University of Arizona Yuma

Location: Veterans Memorial Stadium
Time: 7 p.m.

Friday, May 14

College of Pharmacy

Location: Davis Sports Center
Time: 9 a.m.

College of Engineering and College of Optical Sciences

Location: Arizona Stadium
Time: 7 p.m.

Saturday, May 15

College of Nursing

Location: Davis Sports Center
Time: 9 a.m.

Eller College of Management

Location: Arizona Stadium
Time: 7 p.m. 

Sunday, May 16

Interdisciplinary & Biomedical Sciences (graduate)

Location: Davis Sports Center
Time: 9 a.m.

College of Humanities, College of Fine Arts and College of Architecture, Planning & Landscape Architecture

Location: Arizona Stadium
Time: 7 p.m. 

Monday, May 17

College of Social & Behavioral Sciences (graduate)

Location: Davis Sports Center
Time: 9 a.m.

College of Science

Location: Arizona Stadium
Time: 7 p.m.

Tuesday, May 18

VETS Center

Location: Davis Sports Center
Time: 9 a.m.

College of Social & Behavioral Sciences (undergraduate)

Location: Arizona Stadium
Time: 7 p.m. 

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UA COVID-19 Test Tracker

Daily (5/18)
378 3 0.8%
Total (8/4)
270,694 4,359 1.6%
Includes tests since August 4, 2020
Data from https://covid19.arizona.edu/updates
Updated May 18, 2021