Graduation ceremonies: A now saddening time for families and students

Wednesday, March 18, 2020
News 6 at 11 o'clock/NBC at 7

Four students - Meghan and Caroline Dixon, Ansley Reeves and Peyton Andrews - express disappointment at the prospect of not walking across their graduation stages. (Source: WRDW)

AUGUSTA, GA (WRDW/WAGT) – Graduation. What normally is an exciting time for high school and college seniors has turned into a devastating time as some students might get to walk across the stage.

The University of Georgia and Georgia Southern University have already canceled the 2020 Spring Commencement ceremonies.

Ansley Reeves and Meghan Dixon, college seniors at UGA, already bought their caps and gowns in anticipation to celebrate their hard work over the past four years. As it stands now – they won’t get to wear them.

"For UGA, they didn't even say it was going to be postponed even,” Dixon said. “It was pretty much, oh your may 8th graduation is going to be canceled."

A Change.org petition was started after the cancelation was posted on Twitter. The petition begged UGA's president to consider an alternative. This afternoon, it was already closing in on nearly 10,000 signatures.

"I'm trying to, like, keep it in perspective, you know, people are dying from this every single day, but it's really devastating. I feel like we've been looking forward to this our entire lives."

Disappointment isn't the only thing spreading, so is uncertainty. High school graduations might not happen either as most schools are closing due to coronavirus exposure concerns.

"They haven't really told us much,” Caroline Dixon said. “All we know is that we don't have school until after spring break. They haven't told us anything about prom. Anything about graduation."

Caroline Dixon is Meghan’s younger sister. She is also a senior but at Greenbrier High School. Many high schools have started online learning curriculum after closing for coronavirus concerns.

"We just started online school today, so that's kind of hard to get used to,” Caroline said. Her friend Peyton Andrews, another senior at Greenbrier, agrees.

"Yeah, it's weird,” Andrews said. “And they might cancel our honors ceremony that we like worked for all these years."

The Dixon family might have to miss out on two important days in their lives.

Their friends, as well as thousands of others in the area, who never pictured any of this.

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