West Chester University class of 2020 celebrates graduation ceremony 1 year later amid the pandemic

WEST CHESTER, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- West Chester University is celebrating the class of 2020 one year later with more than a dozen outdoor graduation ceremonies.

Each of the 14 ceremonies, all held at Farrell Stadium, will honor about 200 students over three weekends.

Some of the graduates said it was worth it to come back a year later. However, they thought this day would come sooner.

"Two weeks turned into a month. A month turned into two months. Two months turned into the whole summer, then turned into a year," said Yamilet Reyes, who graduated in May of 2020 and is now pursuing her master's degree.

Jen Bacon, Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities, said, "We promised them that when it was safe to do so, we'd bring them back and help them have a way to celebrate it. I'm so glad that we were able to do that for them today."

The university says allowing the students to walk across the stage was worth the wait.

"This is a day where we get to witness the celebrations, the happiness, the pride, and it really charges all of our batteries up for all the hard work that goes on here," said Chris Fiorentino, the president of the university.

After three weekends of graduations for the class of 2020, the class of 2021 will get their turn with a similar setup.

The university will hold a total of 29 graduations this year.
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