Fresno State drops main commencement in 2020

In an email to students, President Joseph I. Castro announced the university would not host its main commencement, citing a decline in participation.

Fresno State’s university-wide commencement is no more.

In an email to students, Fresno State President Joseph I. Castro announced that the university would no longer host its main commencement, citing a vast decline in participation.


“Attendance at the main commencement ceremony — both in terms of the number of graduates and the number of guests — had steadily declined over the past five years,” Castro said in an email. “In May, only 703 graduates out of the class of almost 6,000 participated in the main commencement.”

According to the university, only two of the 23 California State University campuses will host university-wide ceremonies in 2020.

Despite cancelling the main ceremony, Fresno State will confer its degrees at college or school-specific ceremonies, with honorary doctoral degrees conferred at the nearest-relevant school-specific ceremony.

The honorees of the President’s Medal and University Graduate Medal will be recognized at a dinner held a week before commencement ceremonies.

Some students took to Twitter to express disappointment in the news.

Meanwhile, the university’s commencement schedule for its various departments was also released:

Friday, May 15 Ceremonies · Save Mart Center

8 a.m. – Craig School of Business

10:15 a.m. – College of Social Sciences

12:30 p.m. – College of Arts and Humanities

2:45 p.m. – Jordan College of Agriculture Sciences and Technology

5 p.m. – College of Science and Mathematics

7:15 p.m. – Kremen School of Education and Human Development

Saturday, May 16 Ceremonies · Save Mart Center

8 a.m. – Lyles College of Engineering

10:15 a.m. – College of Health and Human Services

12:30 p.m. – Asian American and Pacific Islander graduation

3 p.m. – African American recognition program

7 p.m. – Chicano/Latino Commencement Celebration

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