Diné College turns to online to honor graduating class

Noel Lyn Smith
Farmington Daily Times

GALLUP — Diné College is recognizing 176 graduates who will receive certificates, associate degrees or bachelor's degrees this month on its website.

Commencement for the college was scheduled for May 8 but has been postponed due to the novel coronavirus.

Provost Geraldine Garrity said in a release that certificates and degrees will carry the May 8 date and students may participate in a future in-person commencement.

"There will be no virtual graduation, however, a celebratory website will acknowledge students for their academic achievements," Garrity said.

The website is available at www.dinecollege.edu/graduates and features prerecorded messages by college leaders for the graduates.

It also has biographies and photographs of each graduate and a hyperlink of "conferral video" if a graduate decides to celebrate at home with family members, the release states.

"You did not ask to graduate during a pandemic, but your stories of resilience, courage and love have inspired us here at the campus, in your communities and across the Navajo Nation. For that, we are honored to call you Warriors," College President Charles "Monty" Roessel said in a recorded message on the web page.

His remark about "warriors" refers to the mascot for the college, which has its main campus in Tsaile, Arizona and branch campuses in Shiprock and Crownpoint, and in Chinle, Tuba City and Window Rock, Arizona.

Noel Lyn Smith covers the Navajo Nation for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4636 or by email at nsmith@daily-times.com.

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