What’s in store for the graduating class of 2021? Stadiums and parades

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HISTORIC TRIANGLE — It’s that time of year where schools across the country are taking the time to celebrate the accomplishments of their graduating seniors. It’s an understatement to say the Class of 2021 has had an interesting senior year.

Last year, the Williamsburg-James City County Public Schools’ (WJCC) graduates had a drive-thru style graduation in Busch Gardens’ England parking lot. This year, graduating seniors are getting a bit more closure to their tumultuous final year.

RELATED STORY: Virtual ceremony, real celebration: W&M Class of 2020 honored for achievement, community, tenacity

With restrictions on venue capacities eased, WJCC has announced locations for the formal ceremonies and celebrations for the class of 2021. The formal ceremonies on June 18 and 19 will cap off senior celebrations, including the senior car procession down Duke of Gloucester Street.

“Last year’s Duke of Gloucester (DoG) Street parades were one of the bright spots of early pandemic life. Graduates, families, teachers and staff and community members loved the opportunity to see seniors celebrated in a uniquely Williamsburg and historic way,” said Christie Scott, spokesperson for WJCC. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to present this special event for the class of 2021 and thank Colonial Williamsburg for their continued support.”

Warhill High

  • Duke of Gloucester Street Parade: Tuesday, June 15 @ 5:30 PM
  • Graduation Ceremony at Wanner Stadium: Friday, June 18 @ 3 p.m.

Lafayette High

  • Duke of Gloucester Street Parade: Wednesday, June 16 @ 5:30 PM
  • Graduation Ceremony at Wanner Stadium: Friday, June 18 @ 9 a.m.

Jamestown High

  • Duke of Gloucester Street Parade: Thursday, June 17 @ 5:30 PM
  • Graduation Ceremonies at Wanner Stadium: Saturday, June 19 @ 9 a.m.

For more information on WJCC graduation ceremonies and celebrations, click here.

York County School Division (YCSD) announced its 2021 commencement schedule in April. For information regarding this, click here.

RELATED STORY: Local high school PTSAs work to give seniors a special year in pandemic

As for local higher education, William & Mary had its first virtual degree-conferral ceremony last year for the class of 2020, with not just one commencement speaker but several.

This year, William & Mary seniors are receiving graduation opportunities that last year’s class did not, including many campus traditions such as ringing the Wren bell and the Senior Walk Across Campus.

“We expect to graduate 1320 undergraduate and 684 graduate students this year,” said Suzanne Clavet, spokesperson for William & Mary.

Here’s what William & Mary graduating seniors have to look forward to this year:

Thursday, May 20

Noon — Lavender Celebration (Virtual)

3:00 p.m. — Ceremonia Raíces: Latinx Celebration (Virtual)

5:00 p.m. — Donning of the Kente Celebration (Virtual)

7:30 p.m. — Asian, Pacific Islander & Middle Eastern/Southwest Asian Celebration (Virtual)

Friday, May 21

Various Times — Departmental Celebrations (Virtual)

4:00 p.m. — Graduate 1 Ceremony

9:30 p.m. — Candlelight Ceremony

Saturday, May 22

9:30 a.m. — Graduate 2 Ceremony

2:30 p.m. — Undergraduate 1 Ceremony 

7:30 p.m. — Undergraduate 2 Ceremony

Sunday, May 23

9:30 a.m. — Undergraduate 3 Ceremony

2:30 p.m. — Undergraduate 4 Ceremony

For instructions for families and guests, click here. For information for graduating students, click here.

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