Boise State reimagines spring commencement as a digital experience, invites class to join winter celebration as well

Boise State University will celebrate the Class of 2020 with an unprecedented digital experience being designed to commemorate the accomplishments of the first graduating class in university history to face the challenge of finishing their degrees remotely in the face of an international crisis.

In addition, Boise State is inviting graduates who wish to participate in a traditional ceremony to return to campus in December for a special commencement celebration honoring all 2020 graduates.

The decision comes as universities across Idaho and the country are forced to restructure large in-person events to slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

“I can only imagine the disappointment the timing of this worldwide disruption has caused you, and I am genuinely sorry for the loss of this significant event,” Dr. Marlene Tromp, Boise State’s president, told the graduates in a video message sent directly to the students. “Commencement is my favorite day of the year. It is the culmination of your incredible work and one of the most fundamental objectives of the university … I truly believe that our students, forged in the fire of this challenge, will become more creative, nimble and innovative as a result. You will be a new generation of leaders who have, in this experience, become pathfinders, problem solvers, creators.”

University leaders are exploring multiple technological options for the May celebration. Updates, opportunities for engagement and other information will be sent to the graduates and their families over the next several weeks.