February 16: Email to December 2020 Graduates

It is my sincere privilege to congratulate you on earning your graduate degree from Champlain College. On behalf of the entire Champlain College community, we applaud your efforts and celebrate this significant academic achievement.

I’m reaching back out with an update on our plans for Commencement 2021 and to share that we have made the very difficult but necessary decision to hold a virtual commencement for 2021.  

We made this decision out of our care and responsibility for your health and safety and that of our community, which has consistently been our highest priority during this pandemic. Due to the current travel and quarantine restrictions in the state of Vermont, the uncertain trajectory of the virus, and the timing of the vaccination roll-out, we will not be able to bring together people from all over the country this May.

That said, we are excited to celebrate YOU with a joyful, meaningful, personal, and memorable virtual commencement ceremony that marks this momentous achievement and captures the spirit of your class and your time at Champlain. This will take place on May 15, 2021, and will include speakers from your class and the community, the reading of names of every graduating student, send-offs from your Champlain faculty, and much more. We have received feedback from many of you via our Commencement survey, and are using this to plan how we celebrate together, even if from afar. We will be reaching out to you for stories about your Champlain experience to make the ceremony special.

In the coming weeks, you will hear from the Registrar’s office about specific details and actions you will need to take leading up to Commencement, including ordering regalia, updating your information for your diploma, and more. We will keep the Commencement 2021 website updated with more information. If you have any questions, please contact us at graduation@champlain.edu

In the meantime, we want to officially welcome you to the exceptional community of Champlain College alumni nationwide. We truly hope that you will choose to stay engaged with us. Our Office of Alumni Relations aims to keep you connected with the College as well as with fellow peers, faculty and staff long after graduation. We invite you to join our Champlain Connect events across the country, and we encourage you to stay in touch, share your news, and visit campus whenever the opportunity arises. You can contact Roland Palmer on our Advancement team at rpalmer@champlain.edu or visit our online hub for alumni at champlain.edu/alumni to learn about the many ways to stay involved. Please know that Champlain will always be your home.

In addition, Champlain’s Career Collaborative continues to support your career development and advancement after graduation with comprehensive and innovative resources, employer networking, and job search support. Alumni job seekers are welcome to stay engaged by taking advantage of the virtual services we offer. Consider joining the many fellow alumni who volunteer to mentor, teach and train current students for their career success. Email us at careercollaborative@champlain.edu or make an appointment with a career coach by calling 802-860-2720. 

What the pandemic does not and cannot change is our pride in your accomplishments and our desire to honor your Champlain experience and your future success. Your Champlain experience has provided you with a full range of skills—both professional and personal—that will serve you well throughout your career and life. In completing your degree, you have also helped the College fulfill its mission to educate adaptable thinkers, daring change-makers, and inclusive innovators who shape professions and inspire communities.

We all look forward to a time when we can gather together in person. Once again, I extend my heartfelt congratulations for all you have accomplished and look forward to celebrating you this May.

Sincerely,

Benjamin Ola. Akande, Ph.D.
President, Champlain College

More News
February 16: Email to Graduating Champlain College Online Students
February 16: Email to Traditional On-Campus Undergraduates
February 16: Email to Parents of Graduating Students