We share the heartbreak, frustration, and disappointment. Tell us how have you been impacted
Following the latest announcement from the University, you may have seen that graduations have been cancelled due to concerns from Public Health England (PHE) and Bath and North East Somerset Council (BANES) over bringing large numbers of people to the city at a time when infections for Covid-19 are once again rising both nationally and locally. The University has shared that they are following advice from the Director of Public Health of BANES Council, who raised concerns about events such as our graduation ceremonies.
We share the heartbreak, frustration and disappointment in response to this news - many of us were due to be graduating in this year's ceremonies. This year's graduating cohort and last year's cohort have already missed out on creating a variety of memories, experiences and milestones that we all come to university to make. We hear and share your concerns about the reasons behind the cancellation of graduations, especially given that other planned large events in the city are happening.
We understand the deep social and financial consequences you must be experiencing. The impact of this cancellation on students is something we are taking extremely seriously. Students have been in contact with us to share the significant logistical inconvenience and emotional impact that this news has had on them and those closest to them.
Bookings and deposits for transport, accommodation and other hospitality services are having to be cancelled, resulting in financial loss. We also recognise that some overseas students have already quarantined in preparation for ceremonies and celebration.
There is intense frustration and anger about the perceived disregard for students’ priorities, exacerbated by the tough time students have had through this pandemic.
We have also seen members of our student community forming a petition aimed at lobbying for the reversal of this cancellation. This can be found here.
Over the last few months, we have worked closely with the University to ensure that graduations were planned in a Covid secure way. The University had planned to hold graduation on campus with social distancing measures in place and additional safety measures.
Following the decision to cancel in light of Public Health advice, we have been in close contact with the University, sharing your feedback and examining how these concerns can be best addressed.
We have also contacted the Director of Public Health for BANES to express our opinions as a student community and to gain a better understanding of how this position was reached, given other public events and activities currently underway in the area and nationally.
Many of you will want to know what you can do about this situation. Gathering widespread feedback from our community on how this has impacted you and knowing what you would like to see happen will help us to effectively lobby for University action on this.
Please tell us about how you have been impacted and what you would like to see in order to address your concerns - Feedback on Graduation Cancellation form.
This news will have affected everyone in different ways, we are here for you and encourage you to reach out if you need support.
With love and solidarity,
Annie, Zoe, Jacob, Elizabeth, Meg and Sid
SU Officer Team
University statement regarding graduation cancellation - See the original announcement from the University.
Gown hire and photography cancellations - For more information and options on cancelling or rearranging your gown and photography.
SU Feedback form - To let us know how the cancellation has impacted you.
Change.org Petition - A group of students and stakeholders lobbying for a decision reversal.
SU Advice & Support - For confidential, independent guidance and information.
Student Services - For help and advice on all welfare and wellbeing issues.
*Consistent at time of writing