The University of the Incarnate Word held its first in-person commencement since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, celebrating the accomplishments of graduates in four separate weekend ceremonies at Gayle and Tom Benson Stadium.

Graduates walked the stage in front of family and friends Friday and Saturday, with 137 who were part of the first graduating class from UIW’s School of Osteopathic Medicine.

Last year, colleges and universities canceled, delayed, or transformed in-person graduation ceremonies to drive-thru events in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. A year later, some schools have kept those modified ceremonies in place.

San Antonio College held a “graduation in motion,” a car parade through the campus led by the Bexar County Sheriff’s mounted patrol and a fire truck. Graduates followed in their vehicles to receive their diplomas.

At Our Lady of the Lake University, a similar car parade passed by the school’s main building, where graduates received their diplomas. Earlier, Christopher Robinson Jr., a 2017 graduate, delivered a livestreamed commencement address inside the university chapel.

A San Antonio College graduate cheers after receiving her degree during a drive-up ceremony. Credit: Bria Woods / San Antonio Report
Two people give a University of the Incarnate Word graduate a peck on the cheek. Credit: Bria Woods / San Antonio Report
People capture moments from the graduation ceremony of the inaugural class from the University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine. Credit: Bria Woods / San Antonio Report
A doctoral graduate lifts her arms in celebration after receiving her degree from Our Lady of the Lake University. Credit: Bria Woods / San Antonio Report
A graduate raises his diploma proudly above his head as they make a procession out of the stadium.
Friends and family of the graduates wave and cheer as members of the inaugural class of graduates from the UIW School of Osteopathic Medicine are officially granted their degrees. Credit: Bria Woods / San Antonio Report
Alamo Colleges Chancellor Mike Flores hands a degree through the window of a graduate’s car during the drive-up graduation Saturday.
Bria Woods, San Antonio Report contributor

Bria Woods

Bria Woods is the Raba Family Foundation Next Generation Fellow- Multimedia Journalist at the SA Report. She holds a bachelor's degree in communication from Trinity University and a master's in multimedia...