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President's Message | Archive

October 6, 2008

TO: Campus Community
FROM: Neil Kerwin, President
SUBJECT: Commencement 2009

As mentioned in my September campus letter, in spring 2009 we will have a new format for commencement weekend spread over three days—from Friday, May 8 through Sunday, May 10. This will include individual commencement ceremonies for each school (on Saturday, May 9 and Sunday, May 10), with three ceremonies on Saturday and two on Sunday. The law school ceremony will be on Sunday, May 24.

One significant change from previous years will be the elimination of ticketing for the ceremonies. Each school ceremony will have our traditional elements—bagpipe procession; comments by the president, provost, dean, and student speaker; honorary degree presentation and commencement address; graduates crossing the stage; and recessional. Because Saturday will now have three commencement ceremonies, events previously held on Saturday (Phi Beta Kappa and the University Honors Program ceremony) will now be held on Friday, with specific details to be worked out in the weeks to come.

Planning has already begun, led by the commencement team working with key links within the schools and units. The schools and colleges will assist with staffing and logistical support, and they are helping us identify and contact commencement speakers.

The order for spring 2009 is:

Friday, May 8                      

  • 1:00 p.m.  Phi Beta Kappa Ceremony (coordinated by CAS Dean’s Office)
  • 3:00 p.m.  University Honors Program Ceremony (coordinated by University Honors Program)
  • 5:30 p.m.  Reception for University and Student Achievement Award Winners (coordinated by Campus Life)
  • 7:00 p.m.  Baccalaureate Service (coordinated by Kay Spiritual Life Center)
  • 8:00 p.m.  Toast to Graduates (coordinated by Alumni Programs)

Saturday, May 9

  • 9:00 a.m.  School of Public Affairs Ceremony
  • 1:00 p.m.  School of Communication Ceremony
  • 4:30 p.m.  College of Arts and Sciences Ceremony

Sunday, May 10        

  • 9:00 a.m.  Kogod School of Business Ceremony
  • 1:00 p.m.  School of International Service Ceremony

The proposed Saturday/Sunday commencement ceremony order for spring 2010 is:

Saturday, May 8       

  • 9:00 a.m.  School of Communication Ceremony
  • 1:00 p.m.  Kogod School of Business Ceremony
  • 4:30 p.m.  School of International Service Ceremony

Sunday, May 9          

  • 9:00 a.m.  School of Public Affairs Ceremony
  • 1:00 p.m.  College of Arts and Sciences Ceremony

While the 2010 schedule is projected and will be reviewed before becoming final in summer 2009, it nevertheless conveys how a two-year model will enable four of the schools to share the Saturday/Sunday timeslots. A main consideration in the order is that the 1:00 p.m. Saturday ceremony should include one of the schools with the smallest number of participants, with the concluding ceremony on each day one of the largest. 

The graduation site provides additional information, and will be a key source of information in the weeks to come.

I hope this information is helpful and allows commencement participants to begin to plan their commencement weekend schedules and coordinate travel arrangements with family members for May 2009.

October 15, 2008 10:41 AM


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