'We needed this' - LIU holds LI's 1st in-person college commencement since pandemic's start

Long Island University is the first college on Long Island to hold an in-person graduation ceremony since the pandemic hit.

News 12 Staff

May 13, 2021, 9:30 PM

Updated 1,075 days ago

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Long Island University is the first college on Long Island to hold an in-person graduation ceremony since the pandemic hit.
Thursday was a day these graduates weren't sure would happen.
"Countless nights we were messaging each other asking 'Is this gonna happen?' We need to do this. We put in all this work, four long years, we needed this." said Sofia DeFalco.
Administrators at Long Island University in Brookville say they were able to hold the first in-person college graduation ceremony on Long Island since the start of the pandemic.
Graduates say it's been a challenging college experience.
"It wasn't easy transitioning in the middle of the year to online. We came to LIU thinking we were gonna be here for the whole four years," said Alexa Brindisi.
Graduates all sat 6-feet apart on the football field while their families sat in the stands spaced out and also on the side of the field -- everyone masked and socially distanced.
More than 400 students had their names called and walked across the outdoor stage. Each graduate was allowed to have two family members attend.
Everyone had to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to get in.
After most graduations were canceled last year because of COVID-19, graduates and parents say they're thrilled they got to have a traditional ceremony.
The university says in the event someone who attended Thursday's ceremony does test positive for COVID-19, it would conduct contact tracing.


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