2020 has had its share of challenges, but this semester's graduates reflect on their unique Penn State stories as the class prepares for commencement on Dec. 19.
SHARON, Pa. - “I’m sure I’m speaking for all of us when I say, ‘Is this year over yet?’” Morgan Force said with a smile. “This year has presented so many new challenges for each one of us. But, class of fall 2020, we did it!”
This semester, more than 5,000 Penn Staters will celebrate commencement across the world through a virtual format. There’s no doubt that Force’s sentiments are shared among the graduating class.
Penn State’s class of 2020 will be honored at a virtual commencement ceremony on Saturday, Dec. 19 at 2 p.m. Following the ceremony, the Shenango campus will host a virtual reception at 3 p.m. for graduates, families and friends.
This semester, two student commencement speakers were selected for their remarkable impact on campus and the community. Jaime Anderson and Force’s commencement messages can be viewed on the campus’s commencement page on Dec. 19.
Anderson and Force, both adult learners, express the challenges of returning to college while juggling work and family commitments. However, there is a silver lining in view for this year’s class. Both speakers celebrate their peers’ accomplishments of earning a degree during this unprecedented time.
“I would not be where I am if it were not for what I've gone through,” said Anderson. “I am here to tell you as living proof that even if you feel that you are at rock bottom, keep your chin up. Things can, and do, get better.”
“It hasn't been easy, but that's what makes this moment even that much sweeter. We made it.”
The Class of 2020 share reflections on what - and who - helped them create a Penn State story uniquely their own.
Penn State’s fall 2020 commencement ceremony
Penn State will honor fall 2020 graduates with a virtual ceremony at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 19. The virtual ceremony will include formal remarks, degree conferral and induction into the Penn State Alumni Association. The virtual ceremony will be available for viewing at fall2020.commencement.psu.edu.
Following the completion of the virtual ceremony, graduates may explore additional commencement pages created for each of the colleges and campuses.
The content on Penn State Shenango’s page is tailored for our community, including video messages from Campus Director Jo Anne Carrick, Career Services Coordinator Taylor Cole and student commencement speakers Anderson and Force. Each graduate will be recognized on this page with a shareable digital slide.
Penn State Shenango’s commencement reception
Penn State Shenango will host a virtual reception for graduates and their families at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 19, following the University-wide ceremony.
Campus Director Jo Anne Carrick and program faculty will honor each graduate, and Darren Steele, vice president of the Penn State Shenango Alumni Society, will welcome the class of 2020 to the Penn State Alumni Association.
Connection information has been shared with graduates. Please contact Jammie Clark if you are interested in attending.
The virtual ceremony and reception are the first celebration for the fall 2020 graduates, as they and their friends and family will be invited back to campus at a time when it is safe to host large in-person gatherings.