Letter from the President
September 30, 2021
As we move closer to October 30, the date we chose for the rescheduled Class of 2020 and Class of 2021 Commencement, we continue to work to build an event that both honors you and your accomplishment and provides the adequate safety measures to protect the health and wellbeing of all involved. As such, we have made some important changes to the event.
- Commencement is being moved from the Yakima SunDome to the Heritage University Toppenish campus. The ceremony will take place outside, on the Great Lawn.
- Only graduates who are walking in Commencement and individuals who have a role during the exercise, such as faculty and speakers, will be allowed on campus for the event.
- The entire ceremony will be broadcast on live television and live-streamed online so that all of your loved ones can watch and cheer for you in real time from the safety of their homes.
- All participants will need to adhere to campus safety protocols, including wearing masks and being fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Those who are not vaccinated need to present a negative COVID-19 test that is no more than 72 hours old when they arrive on campus the morning of October 30 to participate. You will need to present your vaccination card or your proof of being COVID-19 negative the morning of the event when you check in.
- Seating for graduates and other participants will be spaced at least 3’ apart for safety.
We are committed to creating a graduation experience that is full of the celebratory pomp and circumstance worthy of your accomplishment. The ceremony will have most of the same elements that you would expect at Commencement. You and your fellow graduates will still walk in procession, a student representative from each class will still present their Commencement address, most importantly, you will still cross the stage to receive your diploma from the president. Grad Images will be there to get pictures of each graduate as he or she crosses the stage and again with their diploma. These images will be made available to you and your family shortly after the event.
We continue to monitor the state of our region regarding COVID-19 and will notify you immediately if there are any other changes made.
If you are planning to participate a reminder that you must register at the link above by October 20, 2021.
Until we see you on October 30, I hope that you and your loved ones remain safe and well. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to the Registrar at (509) 865-8505.
Sincerely and with great admiration,
Andrew C. Sund, Ph.D.