Virtual Graduation Celebration FAQs

Each year, the University President confers degrees at the University Commencement Ceremony. The conferral, or awarding, of degrees is when the degree is technically completed and graduation occurs.

On Thursday, May 28, we celebrated that spirit and much more as we came together virtually to honor the graduation of the Class of 2020 and conferred their hard-earned degrees. The University live streamed this event and, directly following, Harvard Kennedy School hosted a virtual graduation celebration

We realize YouTube access may be prohibited in certain countries and territories. The Harvard University and HKS Class of 2020 virtual graduation celebrations are also available on Panopto. Links to these celebrations were emailed to our HKS graduates from these countries and territories on Thursday, May 28. 

All degrees were conferred on Thursday, May 28 during the Virtual University-wide Graduation Ceremony.  

The Virtual University-wide Graduation Ceremony was approximately 90 minutes. The HKS Class of 2020 Virtual Graduation Celebration was approximately 75 minutes.

The recorded events will be available on YouTube for several months.

During the HKS Class of 2020 Virtual Graduation Celebration, each graduate had their name listed in alphabetical order by degree program. We know this does not recreate an in-person ceremony, but this was an opportunity to recognize the graduate by name in some way.

Other Graduation FAQs

The Coop is automatically processing refunds for regalia rentals; no action is needed by students. Contact the Coop at with any questions. Rentals will be available for the in-person celebration once it is safe to host this event on campus. 

We are committed to ensuring that graduates receive their diplomas in a timely manner once we learn they can be safely produced. Please confirm your mailing address is up to date in my.harvard.

At this time, we do not have a date set for the on-campus celebration for the Class of 2020. We are monitoring the advisories and once we are cleared to start making plans for group gatherings, we will begin communicating plans for a campus ceremony and celebration.