Important update on December’s graduation ceremonies

It is with a heavy heart we confirm the cancellation of the University of Canterbury’s December graduation celebrations.

The University is monitoring the Covid-19 Alert Levels closely and in response, our teams worked closely with Venues Ōtautahi to ensure our graduation ceremonies incorporated event safety considerations under both Covid-19 Alert Level Two, and in anticipation of the ‘Orange’ category of the incoming Covid-19 Protection Framework.

It seems however, that even the strongest plans are no match for the unknown, which includes the opening of Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland’s borders, the recent community cases in Ōtautahi Christchurch and the scarcity of guidance around incoming Covid-19 restrictions.

We appreciate this outcome will be disappointing to many, and hope you understand that ensuring the safety of our graduands, staff and the wider University of Canterbury community, including our friends and whānau was of utmost importance in making this decision.

What does this mean for our graduating students?
Our graduands are welcome to either graduate in absentia, or they can defer their graduation until a future date.

The first graduation ceremonies of 2022 will be held on Tuesday 12 and Thursday 14 April.

Our graduating students have been advised, and encouraged to complete this web form by 1 December to confirm how they would like to proceed.

Flights and accommodation
We anticipate many friends and whanau have booked flights and accommodation in order to attend a graduation ceremony, and they might wish to now cancel or reschedule their bookings for another date (e.g., April 2022).

  • For information on credit and refunds from Air New Zealand, click here>
  • For information on managing your Air New Zealand bookings, click here>

Many accommodation providers within Aotearoa New Zealand are flexible with bookings due to the uncertainty of Covid-19, and may only require a phone call to discuss the options available for either cancellation, or rescheduling for a new date/s.

The decision to cancel was reinforced by ngā uara | our values and the practice of Tiakitanga, which highlights the importance of integrity and doing what’s right while demonstrating care and protection of others.

If you have any questions or concerns, email

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