Spring Term Information for Phillips Academy Families

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Class of 2021 Commencement

As we make every effort to celebrate the achievements of the Class of 2021, we will also remain vigilant, following all protocols to keep our community safe. Please check back as we continue to share more information.

Schedule of Events

Thursday, June 3, 2021
Community Convocation

Friday, June 4, 2021
Prom

Saturday, June 5, 2021
Baccalaureate

Sunday, June 6, 2021
Commencement Ceremony

FAQs

What is the plan for Commencement 2021?
As we make every effort to celebrate the achievements of the Class of 2021, we will also remain vigilant, following all protocols to keep our community safe. Our current planning allows each member of the senior class, including current remote and day students, to invite two guests to Sunday’s Commencement ceremony. As always, the ceremony will be streamed live, allowing ALL family and friends to share in this special day.

The live stream details will be available on the Commencement webpage a few days prior to Sunday, June 6.

Is the entire senior class invited to participate?
We will be inviting all graduating members of the class to participate in the events of June 3 - 6, 2021. Remote seniors have also been invited to return to campus before June 3rd and have been contacted by the Dean of Students Office. If you have questions regarding your child’s participation in Commencement Weekend events, please connect with Claudia Scofield.

Will there be other commencement events for the Class of 2021?
In addition to Commencement, a campus planning group is also considering how best to honor the traditions in the days leading up to June 6. Those traditions include the Senior Class Dinner and Convocation, Prom, and Baccalaureate. These events are for graduating seniors and our campus community. Outside guests are not permitted to attend.

Will I receive a printed Commencement invitation?
A Commencement invitation will be mailed to the parents or guardians of the Class of 2021 prior to Sunday’s celebration. If additional printed invitations are needed, please contact Caroline Rouillard, Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement. To attend Commencement, you must be registered as a guest by your senior by June 1, 2021.

How do guests pre-register?
Seniors will be responsible for registering their two guests through an online registration page. Seniors will receive the link in an email in the coming weeks.

How will I know if my student has completed their guest registration?
The Academy will verify that each student has registered a maximum of two guests. If you would like to confirm who your student has registered, please email Caroline Rouillard in the Office of Alumni Engagement. All registered guests will receive instructions via email prior to Sunday, June 6.

Can I use another student’s extra guest spot?
While each senior has the option to invite two guests, there will be no sharing of unused guest invitations with other students.

Can guests be from different households?
Yes, the two designated guests can reside in separate households, however please know that both individuals will be seated together.

Is there a registration deadline?
For planning purposes, we ask that all guests are registered by June 1.

Once I’m registered how will I receive more information about attending the Commencement ceremony?
Specific details regarding in-person attendance of the Commencement Ceremony will be shared with all registered guests prior to Sunday, June 6, via email. If you are not receiving these email communications, please email Caroline Rouillard in the Office Alumni Engagement. Please continue to check the Commencement webpage for the most up to date information.

How early can I arrive on campus for the Commencement ceremony on Sunday, June 6, 2021?
Families may arrive on campus for the Commencement ceremony starting at 9 a.m. We encourage families to arrive by 9:30 to allow time for check-in and to find your seats. Please plan to be seated by 9:45 a.m. Procession will begin promptly at 10 a.m.

The dorms will not be open to families prior to Commencement and families should proceed directly to the Greener Quad upon arrival.

What events from the weekend will I be able to watch live?
Families will be able to watch the live stream of the promenade, baccalaureate, and Sunday’s commencement ceremony. The links to the live stream will be posted on the Commencement webpage the day of the event.

What do students wear to Commencement?
Commencement is one of Phillips Academy's most formal ceremonies. Students wear attire that honors the significance and specialness of the day. Casual attire, including baseball caps, is not recommended. View photos from previous commencements here.

Where do I park?
Parking is available in our campus lots; please reference the campus map. For anyone with mobility issues please use the reserved lot behind Samuel Phillips Hall where you will be able to drop off your guest and staff can assist in getting the guest to their seat while you are parking.

Where are the restrooms located?
Restrooms are located inside George Washington Hall, Flagstaff and Barlett dormitories, and Elson Art Center restroom outside of Kemper Auditorium.

Where should parents and guests stand while diplomas are being distributed?
Family members will be asked to remain seated for the entirety of the Commencement ceremony. Prior to the distribution of diplomas, Seniors will form the traditional circle around the guest seating. Video screens will provide an excellent view for all guests throughout the ceremony.

When do seniors need to be out of the dormitories?
Seniors are expected to be out of their dorms promptly following the Commencement ceremony. The Academy will share specific details regarding student move-out, prior to Commencement weekend.

We encourage seniors to pack up their dorm rooms during the day on Friday and Saturday, so that there is very little left to pack on Sunday after Commencement.

Is there local lodging in the area?
Please visit our webpage for Overnight Accommodations.

  • As of Monday, March 22, all visitors entering Massachusetts, including returning residents, are advised to quarantine for 10 days upon their arrival. Travelers in the following categories are exempt from this quarantine advisory:
  • Anyone who is entering Massachusetts for fewer than 24 hours

Travelers who are fully vaccinated (i.e. who have received two doses of either the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines OR who have received a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, 14 days or more ago) and who do not have symptoms.

    All travelers should consult and follow the CDC’s guidelines and requirements for travel. Please find more detailed information and the most up-to-date travel advisories for the State of Massachusetts here.

    What if it rains?
    Please be advised that we make every effort to conduct Sunday's Commencement exercises outdoors. Guests should be prepared to dress for conditions ranging from cold drizzle to intense heat and humidity. The ceremony will only be moved indoors due to severe or dangerous weather.

    If severe weather forces the ceremony to be held indoors, seating may be limited to seniors only. Please visit the Commencement web page for the most up to date information, including inclimate weather.

    How do you accommodate guests with special needs?
    Phillips Academy makes every effort to accommodate people with differing needs and abilities. Please contact Laura Warner, Director of the Academic Skills Center & Office of Disability Services, at lwarner@andover.edu for more detailed information.

    Are dogs allowed at Commencement?
    Phillips Academy is a dog-friendly campus, however, only service dogs are permitted on campus during the Commencement ceremony.

    For additional information, please visit the Commencement website.

    Phillips Academy is a non-smoking campus, and we ask that you refrain from smoking on campus including e-cigarettes.

    Community Convocation - Thursday, June 3, 2021

    Community Convocation marks the beginning of commencement weekend. It is a special evening for the students and the campus community to be together. There are no outside guests allowed on campus for this event.

    More details regarding Community Convocation will be shared in the coming weeks.

    Prom - Friday, June 4, 2021

    In addition to Commencement, a campus planning group is also considering how best to honor the traditions in the days leading up to June 6th, including the prom. The promenade, reception will not be open to outside guests.

    The promenade will, however, be live streamed for families. The link will be shared here on Friday, June 4.

    More details will be shared.

    Baccalaureate - Saturday, June 5, 2021

    The Commencement Committee is working hard to plan a Baccalaureate. This event will be for the campus community and will not be open to guests this year. We will share more details soon.

    The Baccalaureate will be live streamed for families to enjoy. The live stream link will be shared here on Saturday, June 5.

    Commencement - Sunday, June 6, 2021

    As we make every effort to celebrate the achievements of the Class of 2021, we will also remain vigilant, following all protocols to keep our community safe. Our current planning allows each member of the senior class, including current remote and day students, to invite two guests to Sunday’s Commencement ceremony. As always, the ceremony will be streamed live, allowing ALL family and friends to share in this special day.

    The live stream details will be available on the Commencement webpage a few days prior to Sunday, June 6. Please see the Commencement FAQs on this page for more information.


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