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Dartmouth to allow seniors to have two guests apiece at graduation

Published: 5/5/2021 10:06:38 PM
Modified: 5/5/2021 10:06:36 PM

HANOVER — Dartmouth College announced Wednesday that graduating seniors will be allowed to bring two guests to this year’s commencement ceremony, reversing a decision made earlier this year to limit attendance at the in-person event.

Graduates receiving four-year degrees will be allowed to bring two people to the June 13 commencement, which is being held on the field at Memorial Stadium to accommodate social distancing, Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon said in an email to students.

The event, he added, will be open only to adults with tickets. Children 5 years old and younger don’t need a ticket but must sit on their parents’ laps, according to the email.

People arriving in Hanover are encouraged to get vaccines, and masks will be mandatory, according to protocols detailed in Hanlon’s email.

Meanwhile, those receiving graduate and professional degrees will be allowed two guests to their individual school’s investiture/class day celebrations. While they’re allowed to march in the June 13 ceremony, they may not bring guests to that event.

Hanlon said the decision to allow guests this year was made possible by declining COVID-19 cases, the availability of vaccines nationwide and “more flexible state and local guidance.”

Dartmouth’s annual commencement is traditionally held on the Dartmouth Green and graduates can normally bring an unlimited number of guests, although there’s heavy competition for good seats.

However, the pandemic forced Dartmouth to hold a virtual ceremony last June for the Class of 2020.

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