Rutgers University-New Brunswick and Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences celebrated the Classes of 2020 and 2021 in an extended weekend of pomp and circumstance that recognized their resilience and gave recent grads a chance to participate in beloved traditions missed during the pandemic.
For many graduates, the celebration marked their first return to campus since the start of the pandemic, when most students were sent home and classes shifted online. School of Engineering classes of 2020 and 2021 celebrated on Sunday, October 24, in an open-air tent on Cook campus along with faculty, deans, and family members.
Speakers celebrating the newest alumni included Aarushi Govil who as the school’s current president of the Engineering Governing Council (EGC) shared greetings from the two previous EGC presidents representing the two classes: Kaavya Krishna-Kumar and Ethan Zhang.
Govil offered congratulations on the monumental accomplishment of earning a degree in engineering. “While you may not be new graduates, it is still an incredible achievement to earn one of the most difficult yet prestigious degrees available for an undergraduate,” she said.
School of Engineering associate dean Jean Patrick Antoine delivered keynote remarks. His message was one of leadership.
“Your two classes are special in more ways than one,” he said. “You all crossed the finish line after enduring the tail end of your times on the Banks virtually, not knowing what to expect in this upcoming new chapter of your lives. When I reflect on your final undergraduate days, it is clear to me that you are well-positioned to lead in this new season.”
Each student present was recognized by name, walking across the stage, and greeted by the school’s dean Tom Farris and their respective department chair.