Virtually graduated

MTU honors mid-year graduates without the pomp

(MTU.edu) Viasana Kumar, Michigan Tech’s Fall 2020 Student Speaker, addresses the graduating student body via Youtube video available at mtu.edu/commencement.

There was no formal commencement ceremony this year, but Michigan Technological University still tried to make mid-year graduation special. More than 350 undergraduates and almost 330 graduate students were recognized on Saturday, according to a press release from MTU.

Three ROTC cadets were commissioned as offers into the Air Force, and eight into the Army.

Viasana Kumar was the student speaker, and in lieu of speaking before an audience at the Student Development Complex, delivered her speech via Youtube.

An international student, she said when she arrived here at 17 years old, with her mother and sister, she was “pretty much always cold.” She thanked her family for supporting, guiding and inspiring her.

She said she met wonderful people, made great friends, and learned about and enjoyed American culture.

“I feel like I can speak for all international students and say what we felt here was special and Michigan Tech became our home away from home,” Kumar said.

An article with more quotes from Kumar about her time at Michigan Tech accompanied the video.

Othe members of the leadership also recorded video messages to the graduates.

President Rick Koubek offered a virtual handshake and congratulations, as well as a thank you for whatever the graduates are going to do now with their degrees.

Bonnie Gorman, the retiring Dean of Students and Vice President for Student Affairs, thanked students “large or small” for contributing to the legacy of MTU, and challenged them to embrace the Husky spirit as the continue to work hard.

“Care for those that you love, and those that nobody loves,” she said. “Be brave, and yes, be tenacious. Strive to be happy.

Associate Provost and Dean of the Graduate School Will Cantrell added his thanks, and some frustration with the circumstances.

“Despite the changes, and the outward appearances of the ceremony, we celebrate your accomplishment with you and say again, we’re proud of you,” Cantrell said.

The videos are available in their entirety at www.mtu.edu/commencement.


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