Campus News

UK to Celebrate December 2020 Graduates With Virtual Commencement Ceremony

December 2019 Commencement platform
Unlike the December 2019 Commencement Ceremony pictured here, UK will celebrate graduates in a virtual ceremony this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 27, 2020)  The University of Kentucky will celebrate the accomplishments of our December 2020 graduates with a virtual Commencement ceremony at 2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4, 2020.

Graduates from May and August 2020 are also invited to participate if they choose, however this ceremony is not a replacement for the traditional UK Commencement Ceremonies. Similar to this past May, the university is fully committed to honoring the December, August and May 2020 graduates at an appropriate time, when it can be done in a safe and healthy way.

Graduates and guests can access the virtual ceremony at this link beginning 2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4, 2020.

Commencement is one of the best days of the year. The university deeply regrets that we cannot celebrate our graduates in the same ways we have in the past. However, amid a global pandemic and COVID-19 cases increasing in Kentucky and other states, this was considered the best decision for our community.  

The university has partnered with commencement vendor Marching Order to execute the virtual ceremony. Students who have applied to receive a degree in December will be contacted about registering to participate in the virtual Commencement.  Students who received their degrees in May or August and want to participate in the virtual ceremony should email to register.

Approximately 2,000 students are expected to earn their diplomas this semester. 

The virtual ceremony will feature many of the same portions of an in-person Commencement such as a message from President Eli Capilouto, a message from the President of the UK Alumni Association and recognition of the graduates.

To prepare for Graduation, graduates can visit to find additional information about ordering a cap, gown and tassel; purchasing a class ring; joining the UK Alumni Association and more.

For other Commencement FAQs, please visit

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.