Graduation Communication- Let's Support! Recognize! and Celebrate! the Class of 2021!

Clackamas Middle College Graduates and Families,

I hope this communication finds you safe and well during this beautiful time of year.  As we look toward our graduation ceremony this year, the main concern for us at Clackamas Middle College (CMC) is the safety of our students and their families.  As we are finding out, there are many things that we can’t control during this pandemic.  However, because of this, we must work diligently to control what we can in order to provide the best possible support to our students during these unusual times.

In normal times and circumstances, everyone in the CMC community would love to host a traditional graduation.  However, due to the recent spikes in cases around the state, and adhering to the OHA Risk Level Guidance, it isn’t possible for us to host the graduation we would like.  Despite the rise in the state of emergency risk, the one thing we can control is to work diligently to provide the best possible celebration for our students and families during this pandemic.  Because of the safety concerns of our students and their families, the celebration of our graduates will look different than the traditional ceremony we have held in the past.

Planning any celebration takes a tremendous amount of time and coordination, so we would like to begin that process immediately to properly honor our graduates prior to the end of the 2020-2021 school year. 

In order to maximize the time we have during the remainder of the 2020-2021 school year, we have begun planning for celebrations in June for our graduates and their families.  This celebration will ensure the safety of all involved and allow graduates to celebrate with their families.  The plan to celebrate the Class of 2021 will be implemented in three phases:

    • Phase 1-Support! Clackamas Middle College Graduate Care Package Pickup
    • Phase 2- Recognition! Graduate celebration capturing speeches, performances, and graduate recognition
    • Phase 3- Celebrate! Awarding of diplomas and celebration

Phase 1-Support- will include CMC staff preparing graduate care packages for pickup during the week of Tuesday, June 1st- Friday, June 4th.  The graduate care packages will include: a personalized CMC tote bag, Class of 2021 t-shirt, high school and college honor cords, stoles, medals, graduation program, caps and gowns etc... We will send a reminder to families with specific times for pickup at Clackamas Middle College, once we have all the items in the graduate care package.

Phase 2- Recognition- will include a video celebration of the Class of 2021.  This will be available for graduates and families to view in early June, and will include: messages from CMC Staff, speeches and performances from 2021 Graduates, graduate recognition (pictures from each graduate along with a quote), and college signing recognition.  This will be posted on our website and will be available to all families to view and celebrate on Wednesday, June 9th beginning at 7pm.

Phase 3-Celebrate- will be a drive-in style graduation celebration where we award the diplomas to each graduate.  In order to execute a successful diploma celebration, graduates/families can either stay in their vehicles, or adhere to the social distancing guidelines for maximum safety near their vehicle to cheer on their graduate.  This event will be held on Thursday, June 10th between the times of 5-8pm at the Clackamas Community College Harmony Campus.  Details (times for families, location, procedures/protocols etc.) on the drive-in graduation celebration will be communicated in the month of May.

As we plan the details of this three-phase celebration, we will send communications regularly throughout the next month through our website, Facebook, counselor pages and emails.  Please make sure to check these regularly for updates.

We know this time isn’t ideal for many families, so we are working to provide the best possible options considering the circumstances.  We also know that if we begin the commitment to celebrating our Class of 2021 now, we can provide a wonderful celebration while keeping the safety of our students and families in the forefront.

Thank you for your understanding and flexibility during this time, and we look forward to celebrating a wonderful graduating class- The Class of 2021.

Take care and stay safe, and Congratulations Class of 2021!!!

Brian Sien, Ed.D.
Clackamas Middle College