The Commencement of the Class of 2021

#Eckerd21

Ceremony for the members of the senior class
Sunday, May 23, 2021, 8 a.m. EST
On campus, in-person for the members of the senior class
South Beach Field
Families and guests should plan to view events remotely
Livestream and virtual links coming soon

Dean Jim Annarelli
Dear Graduating Seniors,

To ensure that the College is able to host a celebration that honors your achievement and considers the conditions presented by the pandemic—including the new variants and the rollout of vaccinations—the committee has determined that we can offer an on campus, in-person ceremony for the members of the senior class, including those studying remotely this semester, on May 23 at 8 a.m.. Family members and other guests, however, should plan to view the ceremony and other Commencement-related events remotely. All events scheduled for the weekend of May 22–23 will be offered via livestream or virtually so that families and friends can experience the festivities from the comfort of an off-campus venue such as their home or a hotel.

We recognize that this decision will be disappointing to family members who have already sacrificed so much in the last year. The committee considered the complexity of trying to organize an event where everyone could socially distance on campus, and we realized it would not be possible to host seniors and their guests, even those guests who have received the COVID-19 vaccine. Therefore, the committee opted for the scenario which allows for our senior class to sit together, in-person, on South Beach Field for a meaningful ceremony that celebrates their achievements.

The committee also continues to explore options for honoring the Class of 2020. Our decision, based upon public health considerations, to limit the May ceremony to only members of the Class of 2021 means that we must postpone recognition of the Class of 2020 until a time when it is safer for those alumni, who are now around the country and globe, to congregate on campus. We remain committed to recognizing the Class of 2020 and will keep members of the class informed regarding the timetable and format of this recognition.

In the coming weeks, we will provide additional information for our seniors who are studying remotely but who want to attend the Commencement ceremony on campus. Additionally, we will update our Commencement website regularly throughout the spring with programming details. If you have questions about the ceremony, please email Anne Wetmore, Associate Dean of Students and chair of the Commencement Committee, at wetmorac@eckerd.edu.

The Commencement Committee is excited to plan this outdoor, in-person ceremony for our graduates, and we look forward to offering a Commencement that recognizes the accomplishments and tenacity of the Class of 2021.

Best regards,

Jim Annarelli
Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students

The Venue

The in-person ceremony for the members of the senior class, including those studying remotely this semester, will be held on South Beach Field. Family members and other guests should plan to view the ceremony and other Commencement-related events remotely. All events scheduled for the weekend of May 22–23 will be offered via livestream or virtually so that families and friends can experience the festivities from the comfort of an off-campus venue.

Schedule

Sunday, May 23, 2021

Robing for Graduates
Hough Quad
7 a.m.

Commencement Ceremony
South Beach Field
8 a.m.
To be streamed live on YouTube

Academic Regalia

Students: If you have not yet ordered your commencement regalia, please contact the bookstore. The caps, gowns, and hoods worn at college and university functions date back to the Middle Ages.

For Students

Student wearing graduation regalia

Academic regalia for students will include a black baccalaureate gown, a mortar board with a colored tassel reflective of the student’s home collegium, and a baccalaureate hood.

The hood for the baccalaureate degree is of a size specified by the American Council on Education. It is lined with the chevron of Eckerd College, that is with white and teal satin and it is trimmed with velvet the color of which is reflective of the degree conferred. The hood for the Bachelor of Arts degree is trimmed in white velvet while the hood for the Bachelor of Science degree is trimmed in gold velvet. It is important to note that the color of the velvet trimming of a hood is determined by the degree conferred, rather than by the students major. Hence, the bachelor of arts degree is trimmed in white irrespective of the student’s major field.

For Faculty & Administration

The gown for the doctorate has broad velvet panels down the front and three velvet bars on the large, bell-like sleeves; the gown is usually black but when the degree is awarded by certain schools the color of that institution is reflected in the gown. The gown for the master’s degree has short sleeves. Caps may be of the mortar board style or of velvet; a gold tassel indicates a doctor’s degree. The hood gives color and distinction to the academic costume. The hood–a black shell-like affair of varying size for the three degrees and material to match the gown–is silk-lined stressing the colors of the institution conferring the degree. The hood is then bordered with velvet of the color signifying the respective fields of learning.

The colors indicative of the various fields of learning are as follows:

  • Anthropology – Dark Blue
  • Arts – White
  • Business Administration – Light Brown
  • Communication – Crimson
  • Counseling & Guidance – Light Blue
  • Dramatic Arts – Brown
  • Economics – Copper
  • Education – Light Blue
  • Engineering – Orange
  • English – White
  • Fine Arts – Brown
  • Government – Peacock Blue
  • History – White
  • Humanities – White
  • Literature – White
  • Library Science – Lemon
  • Mathematics – Gold
  • Music – Pink
  • Philosophy – Dark Blue
  • Physical Education – Sage Green
  • Political Science – Dark Blue
  • Psychology – Gold
  • Science – Gold
  • Sociology – White
  • Theology – Scarlet

It is important to note that the field of learning having prior mention in the conferment of the degree, and not the department governing the major work, determines the color that is proper for the velvet of the hood. The doctor of philosophy degree requires blue velvet irrespective of the major field. If more than one degree is held, the gown and hood of the highest degree are worn.

Family Info

We are excited that our Commencement ceremony offers us an opportunity to continue the Eckerd College tradition of holding Commencement on campus and outdoors. Family members and other guests, however, should plan to view the ceremony and other Commencement-related events remotely. All events scheduled for the weekend will be offered via livestream or virtually so that families and friends can experience the festivities from the comfort of an off-campus venue such as their home or a hotel. We recognize that this decision will be disappointing to family members who have already sacrificed so much in the last year. The committee considered the complexity of trying to organize an event where everyone could socially distance on campus, and we realized it would not be possible to host seniors and their guests, even those guests who have received the COVID-19 vaccine.

Things to Know

  • A professional photographer will capture each graduate’s conferral. Ordering information for conferral photographs will be shared with families over email.
  • The weekend’s events will be broadcast on YouTube. Links will be posted on this page and the broacasts will subsequently archived on our Commencement playlist.