Picture of Ishpal Kaur
A Special Message for the Class of 2021 (For Graduates Only)
by Ishpal Kaur - Wednesday, May 12, 2021, 4:38 PM

Dear NYTS Graduating Class of 2021:


Congratulations! You have completed the requirements for graduation, and we are so proud of you. You have accomplished this achievement by overcoming every obstacle that stood in your path and now you are positioned to receive your reward. This reward is not only the degree that you have earned, but also the confidence to honor the call to engage in ministry and work that our world so desperately needs. The New York Theological Seminary board of trustees, administration, faculty, and staff are inspired by your perseverance and excited about your future.


We have been in conversation for several months to determine the best way to honor your achievement in the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic. We appreciate those of you who completed the student survey and those who participated in the Zoom conversation with the administration. Prioritizing the health and safety of everyone in the NYTS community was at the center of our decision to offer a virtual graduation celebration on June 26, 2021, at noon. Although we are unable to hold an in-person commencement service this year, we are committed to creating a joyous virtual celebration for you to share with your family, friends, and the entire NYTS community.  Our Vice President for Academic Affairs and Academic Dean, Dr. Tamara Henry, and our registrar, Gina Green, will contact you soon to provide additional information about your upcoming celebration.


We thank you in advance for your patience and understanding as we prepare to offer you the best virtual celebration possible. Students who have completed all academic and financial requirements are eligible to participate in our virtual graduation ceremony. We also invite you to participate in our in-person commencement service next year where we will honor the classes of 2020, 2021, and 2022. We look forward to your active participation so that you will be able to declare to the nations that you are an official graduate of New York Theological Seminary. The message bible reminds us in 1 Corinthians 2:9, “no eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love God.” What a celebration it will be! 


The Rev. Dr. LaKeesha Walrond

President, New York Theological Seminary