How to Celebrate Graduation During Quarantine: 7 Fun Ideas

Carolina Jacobs

Mar 30, 2022

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Countless college graduates have missed their commencement ceremonies over the past few years, but not because they didn’t want to attend. Rather, the coronavirus threw a wrench in their plans, canceling parties and graduation ceremonies, alike.  No one knew how to celebrate graduation during quarantine.

This year, many students fear they’ll encounter the same issues, especially if they have no choice but to quarantine while their classmates cross the stage. Luckily, there are still plenty of fun ways to celebrate from home and truly enjoy your special day. 

1. Plan a Drive-by Celebration

Most people assume that quarantining means being cooped up indoors or staying in bed all day. However, there’s no rule saying you can’t sit in your driveway or car to quarantine and keep others safe. In fact, a drive-by is an easy way for how to celebrate graduation during quarantine.

Both you and your guests can maintain quarantines and keep your distance when you plan this kind of bash. Simply send out digital invites, decorate your yard, and wave to friends and family as they drive by and honk their congratulations. 

2. Enjoy Some Tasty Treats

Just because you’re celebrating alone doesn’t mean you have to skip out on the graduation cake. Treat yourself to a tasty dessert, even if it’s a cupcake or a bowl of ice cream. You deserve to feel special on such a momentous occasion, so cut loose and indulge a little. 

Spend the day baking or order a treat from your favorite bakery or sweets shop. Remember to snap a photo and post it to your socials to make everyone else jealous, too. There’s no one around to share, which means more for you!

3. Have a Photoshoot 

Speaking of photos, one of the best ways to celebrate your graduation is with a classic photoshoot. Don a cap and gown, complete with any sashes, cords, and tassels you would have worn to an in-person ceremony. Then, head on over to your college to take a few self-portraits. 

Remember to stay outside and wear a mask if you snap pictures in congested locations like a local park or downtown area. Stuck at home? Use your smartphone’s self-timer to take a couple of pictures in your living room or backyard. 

4. Host a Virtual Party

If you’ve been looking forward to your graduation bash for years and don’t want to miss out on all the hullabaloo, try hosting a virtual party. Sure, it might not have the same pomp and circumstance as an in-person party, but it can be just as fun. 

Decorate your Zoom backdrop with balloons and banners. Create a playlist for dance breaks and ask everyone to bring their own beverage so they can sip away while everyone chats. At least you don’t have to worry about providing food, entertainment, and party favors. See, there are some perks to a quarantine celebration, after all. 

5. Make a Slideshow

Odds are you have thousands of photos documenting your college years. Why not compile your favorites to create a sentimental slide show. Include pictures of friends, family, and your greatest adventures while you were away at school. You can even ask your loved ones to send submit photos and videos if you want the project to be more collaborative and meaningful. 

Share your slideshow on social media so everyone who contributed has a chance to watch it. Then, download the file onto a hard drive so you can have it as a keepsake if anything were to happen to your phone or computer. 

6. Watch an Inspiring Speech

Perhaps your graduating class didn’t get to listen to a commencement speaker or have any sort of ceremony. In this case, you could use a few encouraging words and a sprinkle of inspiration moving forward. 

Watch a video or two on Youtube or tune into a live commencement speech from another college. Whether you listen to Chadwick Boseman talk about finding purpose or view Steve Jobs’ inspiring 2005 speech, you’re sure to feel empowered and, frankly, unstoppable afterward. 

7. Pop the Bubbly

Uncorking a bottle of champagne after crossing the stage and accepting your diploma is a big no-no at most in-person commencements. However, there’s no reason not to pop that bubbly when you’re quarantined at home. 

Celebrate on Zoom with a virtual happy hour or indulge in a glass or two while you binge your favorite Netflix show. Go the extra mile by adding some edible glitter and using a champagne glass commemorating your graduation year. 

How to Celebrate Graduation During Quarantine

Now, more than ever, there’s no need to worry about minor party planning details. What matters most is the big picture. You finally graduated, and that’s something worth celebrating! 

However you commemorate this day, remember to have fun and don’t sweat the small stuff. With a college degree in hand, the world is your oyster, so spend some time imagining the possibilities — while honoring how far you’ve already come. You can stay safe and have a great time by learning how to celebrate graduation during quarantine.

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