Celebrating our Graduates and Looking Forward

Dear Holy Family Community,

Alas, our seniors have graduated and we couldn’t be more proud of each and every one in the Class of 2020 who has achieved this momentous milestone! I’m especially proud of this particular class for the determination and resilience they’ve demonstrated to reach their dreams. Please join me in celebrating their success!

This coming Monday would have been our 63rd Commencement ceremony and it makes me sigh to think that nearly 900 of these exemplary graduates should be receiving diplomas on stage, and celebrating in front of family and friends. While we are unable to celebrate together immediately, we remain committed to an in-person celebration at a safe time to be determined in the future. We’re considering options that include December or even next May. I know this feels like a long time to wait, but unfortunately this virus has no timeframe, and we are at its mercy.

We don’t want our seniors to wait to celebrate themselves. So we’re sending a special graduation package, to be shipped via UPS next week, containing diplomas, certificates and inspirational messages from our deans and professors. In a separate package, our graduates will also receive their caps and gowns to celebrate and take pictures with families and friends and share via their social channels.

To all our students – we want you to know how proud we are of all you’ve accomplished this year, despite the disruptions and challenges that were put in your path. We’ve all learned many new lessons together – about doing whatever it takes to keep moving forward.

In order to prepare for the future, the University is exploring all scenarios for fall semester to be prepared for how state guidelines impact our ability to operate in Philadelphia and Bucks counties. Our senior leadership team is meeting regularly to plan for all possible academic and calendar aspects, student life and athletics, facilities, budget and planning, and public affairs.

Whether we are able to conduct in-person, online and/or blended learning approaches, we are investing in state-of-the-art technology to conduct more synchronous online learning, thanks to a Title III Institutions of Learning extended grant, and CARES Act funding. With this new equipment and software, we will be able to bring all our students and teachers together in the most interactive environment no matter their physical distance. While much of this work was already underway as part of our strategic planning process, we’re accelerating this strategic initiative to better serve our students in the near-term.

I hope you know how much you, your families and your accomplishments mean to all of us here at Holy Family University. Our leadership team is committed to anticipating and meeting the challenges to deliver the affordable, high quality education you’ve come to expect from us.  These have been and continue to be the most trying of times, but we will continue to work through them together. You are our family forevermore, and we will keep you posted as new plans develop.


Sister Maureen, CSFN, PhD
University President