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Rise Up

April 6, 2020

Spring Commencement Ceremonies Postponed

Dear MC Family,

During this unprecedented time, many of you have asked how MC will handle our 2020 spring commencement ceremonies.

Commencement ceremonies for MC and MC Law will not be cancelled, but will instead be postponed. We have not yet chosen a new date, but we fully intend to celebrate with our graduating students as soon as possible.

Mississippi College made this decision after prayerful consideration of both the safety issues involved and the need to honor our graduates. Up until a couple of weeks ago, I had remained hopeful that we could hold some type of ceremony, but it is clear now that the COVID-19 shutdown prohibits that from happening. This shutdown has robbed all students of a large part of this year at MC. This is a real loss for our seniors, who were looking forward to sharing their final college days with the friends and teachers they’ve come to love, on the campus that has become their second home.

All of MC’s faculty and staff are grieving the loss of these precious days with the students we’ve helped nurture and grown to love like our own children. Speaking personally, my greatest inspiration and a source of my energy and enthusiasm is Mississippi College’s student body. While I know that we have taken the appropriate actions to protect our students during this crisis, that doesn’t keep me from missing them. Rescheduling our ceremony will allow us to welcome our graduates back to campus to properly celebrate their accomplishments and give them the congratulatory hugs and handshakes they so richly deserve. Commencement may be delayed, but it will not be diminished. 

Our seniors and graduate students will still be awarded their degrees and will still officially become graduates of Mississippi College on May 8, 2020. Diplomas will be mailed to our new graduates and there will be no changes to the availability of transcripts. 

Until we are reunited in person, I’ll be thinking of this scripture: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” That familiar, uplifting verse from Jeremiah is often printed in graduation cards. But when we consider the context in which the verse was written, Jeremiah 29:11 seems an even more appropriate scripture for graduations in 2020.

The prophet Jeremiah wrote these words to the people of Israel during their time of exile in Babylon. While being ordered to shelter in place in our own homes is by no means the same as being exiled in a foreign land, we can take comfort in knowing that the same God who promised the Israelites He had a good plan for them also has a good plan for us. Even in the midst of challenges we could not have imagined, He indeed has plans to give us a hope and a future.

Blake Thompson
President