Commencement 2021: Hugs, smiles and mortarboard styles

Is there anything that puts more joy in your heart than seeing your child graduate from college? As the parent of a college graduate myself, I’d have to say, “Nothing I can think of.”

All the questions we parents ask ourselves while our sons and daughters are in college—Will they make friends? Will they be happy? Will they find their academic niche?—are laid to rest on the morning of Commencement day, and all that’s left is the celebrating.

And I can tell you there was plenty of celebrating on campus this past weekend as graduate and undergraduate students received their degrees in person, surrounded by their fellow graduates and seated in socially distanced family pods, where they were flanked by loved ones. Longwood’s senior class was among the few across the commonwealth to gather entirely together for Commencement.

If you didn’t attend the ceremony and would like a summary of what happened, you can read all about it here. You can also view a digital copy of the Commencement program.

But, as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words, so that’s what I’ll devote most of this post to today.

Heartfelt congratulations to all of you whose Lancers moved to alumni status this weekend. Please know that, along with your students, you are a forever part of the Longwood family.

—Sabrina Brown

Students who portrayed Longwood’s mascot, Elwood, are revealed at Commencement, recognizable by the distinctive feet of their alter identity.

With handshakes from President Reveley on temporary hiatus from the ceremony due to Covid-19 precautions, students were encouraged to follow tradition and get a dose of good luck by touching the Joan of Arc statue that had been moved to the stage from the Rotunda.


One of Longwood’s many student organizations is the Service-Dog Training and Education Program (STEP at LU). One pup participated in the ceremony with their trainer.

New events center set to open in summer 2023

I hope your student had a great spring semester. It’s hard to believe Commencement is this weekend. Congratulations to those of you whose seniors are graduating!

This summer promises to be exciting as we anticipate work beginning on Longwood’s new Joan Perry Brock Center.

If your student will be a freshman or a sophomore next year, they will have the opportunity to experience this amazing new facility in person when it opens in summer 2023.

Located in the heart of campus next to Willett Hall, the 3,000-seat center will be the home to Longwood’s men’s and women’s basketball teams as well as the venue for Convocation, concerts and a host of other community events. This much-needed building will fit in seamlessly into campus and become an integral part of the downtown Farmville community.

Check out the introductory website to get a taste of what the center will look like inside and out, and share in the excitement of what the Brock Center will mean for your Lancer and Longwood’s entire student body.

—Sabrina Brown