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Chico State students upset about virtual graduation

Many graduating seniors at Chico State University say they're upset about the planned virtual commencement ceremony.

Posted: Apr 15, 2020 6:39 PM
Updated: Apr 15, 2020 8:31 PM

CHICO, Calif.- Chico State's decision to hold a virtual graduation has a lot of students upset. 

Action News Now reporter Kristian Lopez spoke with graduating seniors who say they've had to go through the Oroville Spillway Crisis, Camp Fire and now the coronavirus pandemic.

They say they're upset that they weren't consulted before the virtual graduation plan was made. 

This year Chico State cancelled all in-person commencement ceremonies due to coronavirus concerns.

Instead, students now will create their own personalized pages with their picture, a quote, and a description about themselves which will be shared with others on a website. 

It will also show their degrees and any honors they may have recieved.

An online petition which started after the news broke has gathered more than 8,000 signatures.

First generation college student, William French says, "It would have been interesting if they had a vote or had people send in ideas or ask their students about it."

Stephen Cummins, Director of University Public Engagement says they needed to get the virtual ceremony up as fast as they could. 

"We wanted to celebrate students now and later on in a future live ceremony," Cummins said.

He says they are planning on holding a commencement ceremony for this graduating class in 2021.

Cummins says the university is aware of the petition but they are sticking to their plan.

The virtual graduation ceremony is expected to take place on May 15th. 

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Although our weather is fairly quiet this evening, a major and long-lasting winter storm is bearing down on northern California with much colder air, stronger wind, heavy rain and very heavy snow beginning Tuesday and lasting through the weekend.
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