President’s Update: Congratulations to our May and August graduates!

November 13, 2020

Dear Clemson Family:

Today we began three days of celebrating our May and August graduates with two commencement ceremonies at Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville. By the end of the weekend, we will have conducted seven in-person ceremonies with more than 2,200 new graduates and their families expected to attend.

This is not how any of us expected the academic careers of our newest graduates would conclude, but I am proud that we were able to keep our promise to our graduates and offer in-person ceremonies. I want to thank our commencement planning team and our administrative leaders for their great work to make this possible.

I also offer my deepest appreciation to our faculty for their work over the past two semesters. They have upended their routines and learned new modes of teaching – but have never wavered from their commitment to our students. Thanks for your dedication, flexibility and expertise.

And to all our May and August graduates: Congratulations! You did it!

You have completed your Clemson journey in the face of challenges that none of us have seen before. Your perseverance and commitment are a true reflection of the Clemson Spirit, and I could not be more proud of each of you.

Clemson graduates are making a positive difference in countless ways around the world, and I know our newest graduates also will make us proud. I am excited to be spending my weekend with this very special group of Tigers.

The chance to personally recognize all our graduates during commencement is the best part of my job, and this year it is doubly special – and not just because of the unusual circumstances. On Sunday, I also get to be a proud dad when my daughter Hannah walks across the stage in recognition of earning her master’s degree in teaching with an emphasis in special education. Congrats, Hannah!

And, speaking of commencement, we remain on schedule to hold December ceremonies as planned at Bon Secours Dec. 16-17. Details can be found here.

As we enter the final month of classes for the fall semester, I am thankful that we have been able to offer our students some semblance of a Clemson experience in the midst of the pandemic. We know, however, that the virus continues to pose challenges for all of us and we remain committed to doing our part to keep the Clemson community safe as we move into the spring semester. I encourage all members of our community to continue to do their part by wearing face coverings, practicing appropriate social distancing and washing your hands frequently.

We all have a stake in keeping the Clemson Family safe. By staying united as Tigers I am confident we will continue to navigate this pandemic and emerge strong.

As always, my thanks to all those who support this great university.

Go Tigers!





Clemson University's 15th president, James P. Clements