​​The Class of 2020 and 2021 continued to pursue their dreams through a global pandemic, while becoming stronger and more resilient. Their hard work and dedication deserve to be recognized and applauded. ​​

Success Highlights​

Gianna Harris '19, a finance graduate who earned a master's degree in business education, reflects on the six years she spent at Bloomsburg University and her two degrees.

Californi​a​ University​​ held its 192nd Commencem​ent, and though graduates and guests wore masks — in addition to following social distancing guidelines — amid the COVID-19 p​andemic, the joy of the weekend was evident. More than 1,000 doctoral, master’s, bachelor’s and associate degrees were conferred by Interim President Robert Thorn.

When 22-year-old Essence Frazier received the letter from Cheyney University President Aaron Walton informing her she had been chosen as class salutatorian, she was astonished. In her three years as a Cheyney student she has consistently maintained a 4.0 GPA. She transferred to Cheyney after a year at Harrisburg Area Community College.

Clarion University President Dr. Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson offered a video message of congratulations to graduates. Faculty and staff also joined in on the message wishing students the best of luck in the future. 

Dr. Harrison Bailey III, Principal of Liberty High School in the Bethlehem Area School District (BASD), was recently named Pennsylvania’s 2021 Secondary Principal of the Year by the Pennsylvania Principals Association. Dr. Bailey earned his Doctor of Education from East Stroudsburg University on April 30, 2021.

Bradley Peters, who graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Public Relations, represented the Class of 2021 during Edinboro University’s virtual undergraduate commencement ceremony on May 8. Peters, who graduated summa cum laude while working as an instructional technologist at Edinboro, became involved in both the radio and television stations at Edinboro – shooting video of football games, producing news programs and hosting his own radio show.

Vincent Thompson, a December 2020 Indiana University of Pennsylvania mathematics and physics graduate and current master’s in applied mathematics program student at IUP, has been selected for a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship program.

The Syed R. Ali-Zaidi Award for Academic Excellence is conferred upon a graduating senior from a State System university. Kutztown University's​ Caelan Brooks was presented as the 2021 winner of the Syed R. Ali-Zaidi Award for Academic Excellence at the State System's virtual Board of Governors meeting.

Lock Haven University recently celebrated the achievements of nearly 400 graduates during the 143rd spring commencement ceremonies. Interim President Dr. Bashar Hanna offered congratulations to the graduates during all three ceremonies, sharing his excitement for the opportunity to host in-person ceremonies to celebrate the Class of 2021 graduates.

Two graduating seniors were members of the Mansfield University team that took first place in the annual State System Startup Challenge for its Greenery Walls business idea. The team received $10,000 to assist in making these seniors dreams of becoming entrepreneurs come true. 

Millersville University​ honored the Classes of 2020 and 2021 by hosting in-person commencement ceremonies. Ten 2021 graduates were highlighted: Adam Bachman, Takerra Flowers, Elizabeth Forrester, Emily Horn, Adam Loving, Channel Lowery, Carly O’Neill, Jordan Peer, Wanli Wang and Faith Willenbrock.

Alejandro Morales ’21 credits the hands-on experience and mentorship he received at Shippensburg University for launching his career. Morales, a dual major in finance and economics, has already accepted a position as an analyst with the investment management firm Loomis Sayles. 

Slippery Rock University conducted its 2021 Celebration of Achievement awards ceremony via Zoom. The annual event recognized faculty and students for their outstanding contributions in the areas of academics, research, scholarship, creative activities and more.

Walking across the stage and accepting a diploma in front of loved ones and classmates is an unparalleled experience for every college graduate. And West Chester University leadership promised that this pandemic would not stop the campus community from celebrating our Class of 2020 in person — even when that memorable celebration was held a year later due to state and local Covid-19 mitigation guidelines.