PITTSBURG — Commencement ceremonies at Pittsburg State University will proceed Friday and Saturday for students who graduated in the spring as well as those graduating this semester, but the university has taken COVID-19 precautions.


Earlier this week, school officials announced a mitigation plan that includes a walk-through ceremony with no seating, guest limits, a mask requirement, and a livestreaming option for those watching from home.


"This is a milestone our graduates remember the rest of their lives and they deserve to be recognized for their accomplishment. At the same time, we have to do it in a way that puts a priority on best practices to keep everyone as safe as possible," provost and vice president for academic affairs Howard Smith said in a news release. "Our spring graduates have been so patient to wait, and we appreciate that. Our fall graduates are being flexible, as well. The commencement committee members have gone to great lengths to plan a ceremony for both groups, and I think it’s an effort that in the end, everyone will appreciate."


The university’s COVID-19 mitigation plan was approved by Crawford County public health officials.


On Friday, Nov. 20, four ceremonies will be held for fall degree candidates. Each will focus on one of four colleges at Pittsburg State. On Saturday, Nov. 21, one ceremony will be held for fall graduate degree candidates in all colleges, and two ceremonies will be held for spring/summer undergraduate and graduate degree candidates.


A pre-recorded welcome from university president Steve Scott will air on video boards after candidates and guests arrive.