The University of Ottawa has cancelled its convocation ceremony scheduled for this spring due to the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic but says it’s looking into ways to hold “an alternate convocation experience” for graduating students later.

In a statement Thursday evening, the university said its in-person spring convocation ceremonies won’t take place “due to the need to respect public health guidelines in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and in the interest of safeguarding the health and welfare of our community members.”

“This announcement will undoubtedly disappoint the thousands of members of the class of 2020 who have been looking forward to convocation day since their arrival on campus. We share your disappointment,” the statement said.

“This is why the university is currently considering a range of options to provide an alternate convocation experience to graduating students, including the possibility that we may be able to one day reconvene with families and friends for our traditional ceremony when circumstances permit.”

The university earlier this month cancelled in-person classes and moved courses online and to distancing-learning formats for the remainder of the semester.

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“Rest assured that all students qualified to graduate in spring 2020 will indeed officially graduate and will receive their degrees and parchments,” uOttawa’s statement on Thursday said.

Students eligible to graduate will be contacted and provided with information by the registrar’s office, according to the statement.

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