SUNY New Paltz Reschedules 2020 Commencement

NEW PALTZ – SUNY New Paltz has rescheduled the postponed, in-person May 2020 Commencement Ceremonies to May 2021.

The College will hold a virtual, pre-recorded Commencement Ceremony on May 22, 2020, at 1 p.m., in order to recognize candidates and graduates in this uncertain time. Those eligible to participate will be recognized individually through a slide show that features their degree, major, academic honors and a photo and quote of their choice.

“Our number one priority is to provide our graduates and candidates with the opportunity to return to campus for a safe, in-person Commencement celebration next year to recognize their years of hard work and accomplishments in earning a college degree,” said President Donald P. Christian. “While we initially considered a fall ceremony, the uncertainty of the pandemic’s timeline and the lack of a vaccine led us to conclude that a May 2021 in-person ceremony would be most prudent.”

The College will share additional details about a May 2021 in-person celebration at a later date.

The pre-recorded virtual Commencement Ceremony WILL NOT REPLACE an in-person Commencement celebration for August 2019, December 2019 and January 2020 graduates, and May 2020 and August 2020 candidates.

New Paltz is organizing the virtual event in collaboration with a third-party company, MarchingOrder, to create virtual graduate and undergraduate ceremonies that will include:

* Brief, pre-recorded Commencement speeches broadcast in accessible video formats

* Verbal announcements of each individual graduate’s name

* Customizable slides featuring personal recognition, photos and messages from each graduate

The virtual ceremonies will be available on a custom website beginning at 1 p.m. (U.S. Eastern Standard Time) on Friday, May 22, so that our graduates and their families and friends can participate from anywhere in the world. The ceremony site will be available for a full year for repeat viewing or for those who are not able to tune in when the event website goes live.

The College will continue to share Commencement-related updates and reminders via email, social media and the Commencement webpage at
We have also created a Commencement Frequently Asked Questions page and will be updating it regularly with new information and in response to feedback from our community.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email