This update is provided for archival purposes only.

Public Health guidance and University of Waterloo operations may have changed. For the most up-to-date information, please visit our COVID-19 frequently asked questions.

Fall 2020 Convocation to be delivered virtually

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

This message was originally sent to students who have applied to graduate by Feridun Hamdullahpur, president and vice-chancellor.

  • We will celebrate your convocation online and with virtual experiences. 
  • Your faculty will host a live virtual celebration on Saturday, October 24.
  • We will send your diploma to your home.
  • You will have the option to attend a future ceremony

We want to let you know that we are preparing to celebrate your upcoming convocation virtually. Due to COVID-19, we are working to make the best virtual experience for you and your classmates.

Convocation is the culmination of years of your hard work, passion and commitment. Our decision to forgo in-person convocation ceremonies was a difficult one to make, but we made it with your health and safety top of mind. 

Convocation brings our whole community together as we celebrate your academic achievements. We will ensure your accomplishments are recognized in October, even though we cannot celebrate in-person.

Below, you will find helpful information about upcoming events. You can also find up-to-date information on our convocation website.

Diploma distribution

We will confer degrees in October so you can start on the next steps of your journey. 

Your diploma will be sent to your mailing address listed in Quest. Watch for an email from the Office of the Registrar or Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs to provide you with more information.

Personalized virtual convocation

We are working to give you the best experience possible as you graduate. In October, we will email you a personalized convocation video. We hope you will watch at your leisure and share this special tribute with your family and friends. We will send the emails on the following dates:

  • October 23: Applied Health Sciences, Mathematics, Science
  • October 24: Arts, Engineering, Environment

We know that students and their families may wish to celebrate this milestone in person., so you will have the option to attend a future in-person ceremony.

Live virtual celebrations

While we’re disappointed that we won’t be able to celebrate with you in person this fall, we are looking forward to marking this milestone in your academic career at a live virtual celebration. Your family and friends are welcome to join in the celebration.

You can expect an invitation to attend a faculty-specific virtual event taking place on Saturday, October 24 at the following times: 

  • 9:30 a.m. ET — Mathematics
  • 11:00 a.m. ET — Arts
  • 12:30 p.m. ET — Environment
  • 2:00 p.m. ET — Engineering
  • 3:30 p.m. ET — Applied Health Sciences
  • 5:00 p.m. ET — Science

Fall 2020 PhD graduands, across all faculties, will also be invited to attend a live virtual celebration on Friday, October 23 from 12 to 1 p.m. ET.

We want to celebrate you

Don’t forget to share your special memories with the UWaterloo community on social media by tagging @UWaterloo and using the #UWaterlooGrad.

Finally, I would like to say thank you to the class of 2020 graduates. Waterloo students and recent alumni continue to show resiliency and perseverance in the face of unprecedented times. I know it has not been easy and you have continued to adapt and push forward nonetheless. While this year’s celebration is different in delivery, the spirit and pride we have for you and your accomplishments remain the same.

As part of convocation, your information (e.g., email address) will be processed through a secure platform provided by Vidyard. Questions about the use of personal information by the University of Waterloo for convocation should be directed to If you wish to opt-out of sharing this information, having your name displayed at a virtual celebration and not receive a personalized virtual celebration, please send an email to by October 16.