WSU graduates celebrate their accomplishments with virtual ceremony

SPOKANE, Wash. — Families gathered around a screen for a special celebration.

Washington State University held a virtual graduation ceremony on Saturday and, while grads hope to toss their caps together this fall, the alternative celebration was still an important occasion.

Instead of sitting in an auditorium full of graduates, Brandy Seignemartin sat with her wife and friends watching the ceremony together on the campus they’ve grown to love.

“It feels amazing. It’s kind of surreal, honestly,” Seignemartin said.

It took eight long years, including four at WSU, for her to get to this day.

Seignemartin dreamed of it playing out a bit differently, but she is still celebrating her success.

“Definitely that bittersweet because we don’t get to be here together in person to really experience this ritual and right of passage that we have been looking forward to for a long time,” she said.

A fellow graduate, Frank Walle, also participated in the ceremony. He picked up mimosas and food from his favorite bar in Pullman, took some pictures on campus, then watched the ceremony with his roommates and parents.

“It’s been a long time coming. This is the thing you dream about for years, since you were a little kid. Like college, this is it,” Walle said.

The path to graduation is never easy, especially for the graduates who went back to school later in life.

“So many emotions, super excited to graduate,” said graduate Brandy Donough. “I can’t thank Wazzu enough for starting this MIT programs for paras. It means a lot to be able to start over as an old person.”

No matter where they watched from, these Cougs know they are celebrating this milestone together.

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