Class of 2019 Commencement 1

Several members of the class of 2019 showed off decorated caps during their commencement ceremony Saturday. There, Franklin College awarded degrees to 209 undergraduates and 14 students in the college’s master of science programs. ERICA IRISH | PHOTO.

Franklin College confirmed Thursday it will hold a commencement ceremony for class of 2020 graduates in October after spring plans were disrupted by the COVID-19 shutdown.

The event is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Sunday, Oct. 11, inside the Stewart "Red" Faught Stadium on campus. The college explained in a press release this venue will ensure there is enough physical distancing for guests to attend.

In the event of bad weather, the ceremony could be moved indoors to Spurlock Gymnasium, where no guests would be allowed because physical distancing is not possible.

The event will be livestreamed on the college's website,

"We are determined to deliver the very special commencement each graduate has earned," President Kerry Prather said in a statement.

Richard DiMarchi, chemistry professor at Indiana University and entrepreneur in the biosciences, will deliver the keynote address. He will receive an honorary doctor of science degree during the ceremony. DiMarchi is the chief scientific officer for MBX Biosciences and formerly served as vice president at Novo Nordisk Research Laboratories and Eli Lilly and Company.

The college will also award an honorary doctor of humane letters degree to Michael Gilligan, president emeritus of the Henry Luce Foundation in New York, and an honorary doctor of laws degree to Douglas L. Tillman, retired associate general counsel for Eli Lilly and Company.

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