With declining participation rates, the University of Delaware is cutting its winter graduation ceremony.
According to school officials, less than 22 percent of eligible graduates participated in the last ceremony held on Jan. 12.
“We’ve seen a consistent pattern of a low number of students coming to this ceremony over the last several years,” said Jeff Garland, vice president and university secretary at UD. “This year, there were approximately 350 students in attendance, out of more than 1,620 eligible to be there.”
For the past 20 years, UD hosted winter commencement for students who completed their degree after the fall semester or during the summer. Those students will be allowed to participate in the university’s larger ceremony held in May.
More than 3,600 students participated in last year’s spring commencement ceremony, according to UD.
“Our students work hard to complete their degrees, and, as we welcome them into our alumni family, we want to ensure that the occasion is meaningful and important for them,” added Garland. “This decision will allow us to take the monetary and staff resources needed for the poorly attended winter event and use them to our best advantage at the larger May ceremony.”