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How each IU school is celebrating graduation


IU has postponed all in-person spring commencement activities due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but several schools throughout IU’s campus have decided to celebrate their graduates through various virtual ceremonies throughout the month of May.   

These celebrations will be streamed via Facebook Live, on the schools websites', on or on

Jacobs School of Music 

The Jacobs School of Music will be sending a special alumni package including an alumni t-shirt, an alumni lapel pin, candy and information on IU’s virtual commencement activities. 

According to Jennifer Naab, the administrative assistant at the dean’s office, the school is planned a virtual event that was streamed on12:30 p.m. on May 9 on At the event, graduates were welcomed by the dean and other JSOM administrators, and all graduates’ names will be announced. 

School of Public Health 

The School of Public Health is creating a tab on its website to publish a series of video messages from the school’s Dean, David Allison. There will be a special message from the top GPA earner and video montages from each SHP department that will feature faculty and staff sending good wishes to the graduates. The tab will be published May 27.

According to Amy Oakley, director of outreach, alumni engagement and events at the SPH, the school plans to invite its graduates for the winter recognition celebration if the university is allowing in-person events at that time. 

School of Social Work 

The School of Social Work sent out a survey to staff and students via Canvas to vote for choices for student and faculty speakers for a video it is creating. The school will also have PowerPoint slides created by the students for their classmates. There will be one video for students receiving a Bachelor of Social Work and another video for students receiving a master’s in Social Work studies. 

The Media School 

The Media School is creating a celebration video that will feature student-submitted videos and photos and a message from the faculty. The video was released May 9 after the university-wide ceremony, said Emily Harrison, director of development and alumni relations. 

Dean James Shanahan will also deliver a video message as part of the university-wide event.  

School of Nursing 

IU Bloomington School of Nursing is creating a combination of video graduation and a video yearbook for graduating students.

According to John Simmons, the school's strategic marketing and communications manager, it hopes to include traditional graduation speeches in the video along with speeches from Associate Dean Mary Lynn Davis-Ajami and faculty.

It will also feature recorded speeches from IU Provost Lauren Robel, Robin Newhouse, Dean of the IU School of Nursing, Chad Priest, CEO of the American Red Cross Indiana Region and senior class officers leading students in reciting The IU School of Nursing Nurse's Pledge that typically ends an in-person graduation ceremony.

The video will be shared with the seniors through the IU School of Nursing Bloomington YouTube channel. 

Maurer School of Law 

In place of a virtual ceremony, the school put together a video filled with messages from staff and the student’s favorite memories, Director of student affairs, Katie Beck, said.  

The school plans on posting the video messages on the day of graduation and share memories throughout the month of May on social media. 

Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture, and Design

The Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture, and Design celebrated with a virtual event May 8 for graduating students, according to its website. The school asked students to send a photo of themselves for the school to share on social media. 

School of Education 

The School of Education is putting together a video with recorded messages from the school’s Dean, commencement speaker Charles Nelms and the Dean of Teacher Education, Jill Shedd to honor undergraduate seniors. Each student was asked to record a video of their name, major, hometown and words of thanks. 

The school received a donation that will allow each graduating student to get a copy of Charlie Nelms’ book, said Scott Witzke, school of education director of marketing and communications.

Luddy School of Information, Computing, and Engineering 

Luddy School of Information, Computing and Engineering will held a virtual celebration at 2 p.m. Thursday, May 7 on Facebook Live. According to the website, the celebration will include student speakers, alumni greetings, recognition of students and social time on a Discord Server.

School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA) 

The School of Public and Environmental Affairs will be putting together a virtual recognition ceremony video that will be shared with students. The video will feature leadership from the O’Neill School offering their congratulations and gratitude to students for completing their degree. The completed video will be available from, said Brian Seavey, director of undergraduate student engagement.   

Kelley School of Business 

The Kelley School of Business will had a virtual sendoff at 8 p.m. May 8. Dean Idie Kesner, faculty and staff spoke at the send-off event on Facebook Live and the school’s YouTube channel. 

College of Arts and Sciences

Dean Rick Van Kooten will be writing letters of congratulations to the graduating undergraduate and graduate students in the College of Arts and Science. There will be a commencement webpage where students can go and access the dean’s message and campus-wide commencement website, office coordinator Logan Dudley said. 

Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies  

Seniors in HLS were asked to fill out a survey for a virtual recognition that asked students for their majors and minors, awards students have received, a photo of themselves and photos of their favorite memories of HLS to be shared in a video. 

School of Optometry

The School of Optometry will be hosting an online ceremony for seniors with faculty, staff and school administrators who will record short videos congratulating the school’s new doctors along with resources that graduating students will need as they start their careers. Graduates will also receive a box with a few gifts, said Clinical Associate Professor Todd Peabody.

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