2020 Commencement Postponed: A Message from President Rock Jones

Dear Seniors,

I hope everyone is doing well and adjusting to the upheaval created by COVID-19. I know how hard you have worked to earn your OWU degree, and my heart aches knowing that you can’t be on campus to complete your senior year. The final weeks of my own college experience, now 40 years ago, were magical, and I’m sorry that you and your classmates are losing this time together.

To those of you who have reached out to me to share concerns, ask questions, and recognize faculty and staff who have been especially helpful to you – thank you. It is important that we stay connected, even remotely, as we begin this unwelcome period of separation.

It also is important that we to plan to celebrate you and all you have accomplished as graduating seniors. Will we have a Class of 2020 Commencement ceremony? The answer is a resounding YES!

However, we aren’t sure yet when the ceremony will happen. Because of the continuing uncertainty, we are postponing the May 9 date. For now, we are looking at dates in the summer and continuing to monitor the latest public health reports and government guidelines for large events. We will work with your senior class officers and all campus offices and departments to create a meaningful experience for you when the time is right.

I can’t wait to hand you your diploma and shake your hand (or maybe bump your elbow) as you walk across the graduation stage in front of cheering family members and friends. And we will plan other festivities during Commencement weekend to give you the opportunity to celebrate properly with your classmates and families.

As much as you want to be here to complete your senior year, we want you here, too. We have watched you grow and mature so much over the past four years as your Ohio Wesleyan classes and experiences have opened your eyes to the world and helped you to define your role in it. How could we not gather to celebrate something so significant?

Good luck with the rest of your senior year. I hope you will remain engaged and connected with your classmates and with everyone on campus who is cheering you on, no matter where you are.

Ohio Wesleyan Class of 2020, you are ready for this challenge, and you will rise. In due time when Commencement arrives, we on campus along with your family and friends will rise to applaud your accomplishments and celebrate your degree.

– Rock

For those unable to join us for this special event, we invite you to watch our live Commencement webstream.

We invite you and your family and friends to share photos, videos, and other Commencement-related well wishes by tagging social media posts with #OWU2020.

Department Contact Info


Office of the Provost
University Hall 108
Delaware, OH 43015
P 740-368-3100
F 740-368-3374
E provost@owu.edu