FAIRMONT, W.Va. – Fairmont State University has announced plans to hold in-person commencement exercises next week in the Feaster Center. Fairmont State Chief of Police and Director of Emergency Management, Matt Swain said the safety plan was developed with the executive leadership team and Marion County Health Officer Lloyd White.
“Trying to do everything we can to give these students a send-off,” Swain said,” In the safest way possible that still resembles some sense of normalcy for the institution.”
“Commencement is always special, but these students have raised the bar – they overcame unprecedented challenges and thrived throughout the pandemic,” said Mirta M. Martin, Fairmont State University president. “I couldn’t be prouder of the efforts of our faculty and staff, who have put in long hours and come together to ensure we can safely celebrate our Falcon graduates together, in-person. We look forward to honoring their achievements and commemorating their resilience as they prepare to soar as Falcon graduates.”
Each graduate will receive two guest tickets for family members.
The staff and faculty have spent many hours planning for the event and identifying procedures to maintain safety during the five separate events that are planned.
“Sanitizing like we’ve continued to do, making sure everybody is staying a part and masking,” Swain said,” Try to keep these ceremonies short, sweet, but get to the point of giving these students the send off they’ve worked so hard for.”
These will be the closest thing to a normal gathering since the beginning of the pandemic for the Falcon Family.
“Something that the institution is doing and it’s very difficult on the staff and faculty of the institution is having five graduations,” Swain said,” So we can lower the numbers to be as safe as possible.”
President Martin is become known for her passion for the students, faculty, staff and lamented early in the pandemic that she felt as if she were living in a ghost town during the modified stay at home order.
“She was a big advocate for making sure we were trying to do what we can, so that’s why we brought everyone to the table,” Swain said,” She was very adamant that we give these folks a proper send-off.”
Swain said they are depending on families to follow the guidelines set forth by the university and endorsed by the Marion County Health Department.
“Have patience and understand the policy of two people and wearing a mask with social distancing,” Swain said,” So, we can have these events as safe as possible.”
Here is a schedule of events:
Friday, April 23:
Special Student Athlete Ceremony – 6 p.m.
Saturday, April 24:
School of Nursing – Commencement and Pinning Ceremony – 9 a.m.
School of Education, Health & Human Performance and Regents Bachelor of Arts – Noon
College of Science and Technology – 3 p.m.
Sunday, April 25:
College of Liberal Arts – Noon
School of Business and Aviation – 3 p.m.
The events will also be streamed online.