virtual commencementPROVO, Utah, May 8, 2020Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions (RMUoHP) celebrated 64 master’s and doctoral degree candidates during its May 8, 2020, virtual commencement ceremony.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the University decided to celebrate the accomplishments and success of graduates by a virtual commencement that everyone could see and attend remotely via RMUoHP’s YouTube channel. Each of the graduates was recognized by their department chairs with their photo and awarded their degree. The ceremony remains available to view.

“Today is your day,” said Dr. Richard P. Nielsen, founding president and CEO of RMUoHP. “Though the pomp and circumstance of this particular exercise has been changed a little bit because of the circumstances of the world, the significance of this event is not changed.”

Hannah Byerly, who received her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree, said she looks forward to getting out there and making a difference. “It’s been a great experience for me. I have some leads but will be looking for that new physical therapy job in a world where everything is different,” she said referring to the difficulties of providing traditional PT services caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. “The challenges we face will force us to get better because there are so many things we don’t know.”

With an emphasis on protecting the health and safety of its students, supporters, and faculty, the University made significant changes to their teaching processes and curriculum moving them online due to the global pandemic. Additionally, it made adjustments to provide the best possible experience for a virtual commencement since everyone was not going to be able to physically meet.

RMUoHP students received degrees in the following areas:

  • Master of Science in Health Science – Sports Performance
  • Doctor of Science/Doctor of Philosophy in Health Sciences
    • Athletic Training
    • Orthopaedic and Sports Science or Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy
  • Doctor of Occupational Therapy
    • Administration and Practice Management Track
    • Pediatrics Track
    • Education Track
  • Doctor of Physical Therapy
  • Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Certificate
  • Transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy – Pediatric Science
  • Doctor of Speech-Language Pathology
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice

RMUoHP estimates that graduates currently treat tens-of-thousands of patients throughout the country every day and, over the course of their cumulative careers, serve millions of people.

Regarding the 2020 class Nielsen said, “We have an opportunity to look at this crisis as an opportunity. It breeds the ingenuity, the creativity, and the resourcefulness that comes out in not only an academic way but teaches clinicians how to practice.

“They are going forward now with resiliency in the healthcare arena that they would never have had without going through the pandemic. They will be out there alleviating pain, modeling service, and bringing healing to the world.”


About Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions

Founded in 1998 and located in Provo, Utah, Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions (RMUoHP) is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, an institutional accrediting commission recognized by the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education. RMUoHP offers high-quality, evidence-based, and outcomes-oriented healthcare programs.