Rhode Island School of Design Celebrates the Class of 2020

On Saturday, May 30, Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) will honor the 457 undergraduate and 207 graduate students earning their degrees this spring. The global virtual celebration featuring a video tribute to the class of 2020 will go live at 9 am EDT at commencement.risd.edu and will remain posted online.

The celebration is not a virtual commencement, but a moment to commemorate the class of 2020 and their families, and students’ perseverance through these tremendously challenging times. The video will include remarks from President Rosanne Somerson, Provost Kent Kleinman, graduating students and other special guests, as well as recognition of each graduate and the announcement of student awards.

RISD will hold an in-person commencement ceremony once circumstances permit. It is tentatively scheduled to occur during RISD Weekend (October 9-11), the college’s annual alumni reunion and family weekend, and an update on plans will be shared in early summer.

“While this year ended so much differently than any of us could have imagined, I am so incredibly proud of the class of 2020, and the resilience and resourcefulness they have shown during this unprecedented time,” notes President Somerson. “Commencement marks the extraordinary accomplishments of our graduating students and represents a lifetime milestone for students and their families, years in the making. I look forward to celebrating the class of 2020 both virtually and in person.”

Because in-person events and exhibitions that are usually held around commencement are not possible this year, a series of virtual experiences will highlight new work produced by graduating students, including:

About Rhode Island School of Design 

RISD’s mission, through its college and museum, is to educate students and the public in the creation and appreciation of works of art and design, to discover and transmit knowledge and to make lasting contributions to a global society through critical thinking, scholarship and innovation. The college’s strategic plan NEXT: RISD 2020-2027 sets an ambitious vision for educating students for the future and bringing creative practices to bear on the creation of just societies, a sustainable planet and new ways of making and knowing. RISD’s immersive model of art and design education, which emphasizes critical making through studio-based learning and robust study in the liberal arts, prepares students to intervene in the critical challenges of our time. Working with exceptional faculty and in extraordinary specialized facilities, 2,500 students from 69 countries engage in 42 full-time bachelor’s and master’s degree programs. RISD’s 30,000 alumni worldwide testify to the impact of this model of education, exemplifying the vital role artists and designers play in today’s society. Founded in 1877, RISD (pronounced “RIZ-dee”) and the RISD Museum help make Providence, RI among the most culturally active and creative cities in the region. Find more information at risd.edu.

Media Contact: Christina Allan