Dear Members of the MECA&D Community,

As we look ahead to the conclusion of the academic year, we are working to finalize plans for a Commencement ceremony that will appropriately honor our graduating students’ academic achievements.

I am pleased to share that on Sunday, May 16, 2021, at 10:00 AM, we will hold MECA&D’s 2021 Commencement at the Cross Insurance Arena on Free Street across from MECA&D (please note the change of date from Saturday, May 15, 2021). The 34,000 square foot arena can accommodate up to 9,500 people under normal circumstances. Given the size of the arena and following appropriate health protocols, we will be able to safely host an in-person event that will allow our one hundred plus graduating students from the Class of 2021 and the Class of 2020 to celebrate together.

To prioritize the health and safety of our graduates, at this time we anticipate limiting attendance to graduating students, the Commencement platform party, and select faculty and staff who will be volunteering their time to support the event. Given recent changes to Maine's COVID-19 protocols per Governor Mills, we are assessing the ability of graduates to invite a guest(s) to attend commencement. Future updates regarding guests will be posted on the MECA&D website and communicated to graduating students. The ceremony will be simultaneously live-streamed so that parents, families, and friends, as well as the rest of the MECA&D community, can celebrate alongside our graduates.

MECA&D’s health and safety protocols will be in place so everyone in attendance will be required to wear masks and maintain social distancing throughout the event and will continue to participate in MECA&D’s COVID-19 testing program through the conclusion of the semester. Our consulting physician, a specialist in infectious disease, has voiced his approval for our plan for an in-person ceremony.

Our MECA&D community of students, faculty, and staff has set a very high standard of cooperation and teamwork. We have been able to gather together all year safely, and I commend each and every one of you for all your efforts to keep our campus a safe environment. The artwork created during this pandemic is compelling, imaginative, and provocative, reminding us all of the power of creativity, teamwork, and collaboration.

I look forward to sharing our year-end celebrations with our students in person and with our community virtually.


Laura Freid

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