‘Couch Commencement’

Chancellor Joe Gow performs UWL’s alma mater song during this spring’s Couch Commencement.

Virtual ceremony a precursor to potential in-person event

They didn’t celebrate in the La Crosse Center as planned. But the more than 1,700 UWL students planning to participate in the Saturday, May 16, commencement were recognized that morning — and they and their families could take part from the comfort of their own couch.

UWL’s first virtual ceremony, “A Celebration: Class of 2020 [Couch Edition],” went online at 10 a.m. at www.uwlax.edu/celebrate/commencement. The site includes messages from Chancellor Joe Gow, students and alumni, along with a special brass performance of “Pomp and Circumstance.” Many academic and campus departments shared greetings from faculty and staff. Capping off the celebration, photos and written messages from graduates provided a personal touch.

An in-person ceremony on campus has been rescheduled for Saturday, Aug. 22, health and safety restrictions permitting.

While the tribute wasn’t ideal, it was a good way for graduates to start their celebration, says Provost Betsy Morgan.

“We are so proud of you and all you’ve done to get to this major milestone,” noted Morgan. “We look forward to sharing this online celebration with you.”

>>>Chancellor Gow performs the “Alma Mater”

>>>A message from Alumni Association Chair Kyle O’Brien

>>>A special performance of “Pomp & Circumstance”

ROTC commissioning for UWL students

Nine UWL students were commissioned during a special virtual ceremony via Zoom Sunday, May 17. Instead of one mass commissioning, each student was commissioned individually in a personal 30-minute ceremony with parents, siblings, grandparents and others close.