With Spring Commencement less than two weeks away, the University of Michigan has planned a number of special activities to honor the Class of 2021.

The plans include ways to celebrate both at home and in Ann Arbor as the university prepares to host a virtual commencement ceremony May 1, due to restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Commencement season is an exciting and celebratory time of year for our campus community,” said Susan M. Collins, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. “We look forward to commemorating this year’s class — one that has accomplished so much in the face of challenging circumstances.” 

Festivities include a public street mural honoring the graduating class that will be installed April 25 on East Washington Street in front of the Rackham Graduate School. The mural will feature the work of about 30 undergraduate students in the Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design and be available for viewing — and Instagram posts — through May 2.

Organizers say the design of the mural, which will close down a section of the street between South Thayer and Fletcher streets, aims to “communicate feelings of appreciation, accomplishment and an unforgettable Michigan experience.”

Earlier this month, about 5,300 members of the Class of 2021 took to the field at Michigan Stadium for special appointment-based photo opportunities.

Additional commencement efforts include:

Banners such as this one on a light pole near Sam Wyly Hall are being installed around campus to celebrate this spring’s graduating class.
  • Burton Tower will continue to be lit up every night in maize and blue for the month of April and the first weekend in May.
  • Commencement banners will soon go up on campus light poles, the Diag and notable campus buildings, and the Michigan Stadium marquee will feature a message to graduates.
  • Angell Hall will be decked out with special celebratory lighting on April 30 and May 1.
  • “The Victors” and “The Yellow and the Blue” will play from both campus bell towers and the Kerrytown Chime at 7 p.m. April 27.
  • Graduating students, friends and family can celebrate on social media with commemorative Facebook frames, Snapchat lenses and Zoom backgrounds, all available at commencement.umich.edu.
  • Students and supporters are also encouraged to congratulate the Class of 2021 by donning their favorite maize and blue garb and sharing a photo on social media using #MGoGrad.

Students are invited to experience the virtual Spring Commencement ceremony either with friends and family at home or from the stands of Michigan Stadium for an event that will comply with state-mandated public health guidelines.

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