Campus News

UK Delivers Surprise Grad Boxes to Spring 2020 Graduates

Graduate Sally Martin shares what's inside the UK 2020 grad box.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 8, 2020) — Although we are all anxiously waiting to safely celebrate in person, the University of Kentucky has sent a little surprise in the mail to each May 2020 graduate to help commemorate their accomplishments.

"Commencement is one of the university’s most cherished traditions and it was important to celebrate the Class of 2020 on their achievements and perseverance as they earned their degrees in the most extraordinary times,” shared Taunya Phillips, 2019-2020 UK Alumni Association president. “We hope this special gift helps make our graduates feel welcome into the UK alumni family.” 

All May 2020 graduates will receive a Grad Box with the following:

  • diploma and diploma cover;
  • letter from UK President Eli Capilouto;
  • letter from former UK Alumni Association President Taunya Phillips;
  • UK Parent and Family Association "Proud of my Graduate" sticker;
  • UK Alumni Association printed resource;
  • UK Alumni lapel pin;
  • keychain engraved with coordinates of campus; and  
  • Kentucky Kernel "Class of 2020" printed book.

“I really appreciated the work and thought that was put into the box by faculty, staff and administrators to make sure graduating students were given something in place of a spring ceremony,” said Sally Martin, May 2020 graduate and the new commencement coordinator at UK. “It was exciting to open up the box and not only get my diploma, but also things like the Kernel’s Year In Pictures and a keychain with UK’s coordinates on it so students can always remember this strange time to graduate college. I hope all the students that received the box felt how proud UK is of them and their accomplishments."

Please note that many professional schools and departments operate on a different timeline than the main campus, so those boxes and diplomas will be mailed out upon official graduation. Those boxes will differ slightly given that some degrees are officially conferred in August.

May 2020 graduates’ degrees now appear on their transcripts. Graduates can view the awarded degree on their unofficial transcript in myUK. To order an official transcript, please go to this link.

Graduates are encouraged to share their boxes on social media by tagging @universityofky.

Grad Box contents
Graduates received a few surprises with their diplomas. Photo courtesy of Sally Martin.

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 three 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" two 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 four 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.