ANNAPOLIS, MARYLAND—A U.S. Naval Academy commissioning is a moving event that typically only friends, family members, fellow midshipmen, faculty, and journalists are privileged to attend. Until this year. To help ensure health and safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Naval Academy has scheduled its first-ever virtual graduation and commissioning for Friday, May 22. The live streamed event will kick off with a 2:30 p.m. EDT tribute to the Class of 2020. Click HERE to access the Naval Academy’s news release containing all the details.

Naval Academy midshipmen are part of the fabric of Annapolis. Each year, the community rallies to send its newly minted Navy Ensigns and Marine Corps Second Lieutenants into the world with a fond farewell. While social distancing requirements have resulted in a Commissioning Week devoid of some of the Naval Academy’s – and the community’s – most cherished traditions, Navy fans have an unprecedented opportunity to thank members of the graduating class for all they have done – and all they will do – by 'attending' the virtual commissioning.

In a salute to Naval Academy graduates past and present, Visit Annapolis & Anne Arundel County invites individuals to share their favorite images of Commissioning Week celebrations on social media using the hashtag, #CelebrateOurMids and by uploading them HERE. Visit Annapolis will share the images later in May via a collage on the website. Go Class of 2020! Go Navy!!