To: University Community
From: Provost Kathy Ogren
Date: August 11, 2017
Subject: Commencement 2018 schedule
Commencement 2018 will take place April 19–20, 2018, which includes our University-wide Baccalaureate and specific Commencements for Johnston, the School of Education, and the School of Business. In recent years, sweltering temperatures on Saturday morning created discomfort and health risks, which prompted graduates and their families to leave the Greek Theater before the conclusion of the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) ceremony. The Commencement Committee met in May and June to debrief the 2017 experience and consider changes for 2018. The Provost convenes this Committee, which includes stakeholders from across the campus. The Deans, Cabinet, Student Affairs, the President’s Office, Facilities, the Registrar, and Advancement all contributed to the discussions.
After much deliberation about several concerns (heat, availability of volunteers, logistics, and crowds) and the importance of meaningful events for all of our graduates and their families that we can effectively manage over four days, we have reached a consensus about a new schedule to pilot in 2018. We will move CAS Commencement to Friday, April 20, in the later afternoon and evening, with a Congratulatory Reception to follow in the Orton Center. CAS finals will conclude on Wednesday, leaving Thursday available for the Honors Convocation and other events. CAS Friday Commencement will be followed by a reception in Orton. The mid-summer parents’ newsletter has alerted CAS parents to these changes.
Because the CAS Commencement is now scheduled for Friday late afternoon and evening, followed by a reception, the School of Business (SB) is able to host a brunch on Saturday prior to Commencement, instead of a dinner on Friday. This will enable SB graduates and families to make one trip to campus. School of Education and Johnston ceremonies remain largely unchanged.
A new schedule for 2018 is provided so that you can plan now. New opportunities for CAS departmental receptions and dinners are now possible on Thursday evening, as well as a new reception planned for First Generation students on Friday. More details on these changes/additions will follow after the Commencement Committee re-convenes in the fall.
Wednesday, April 18
5:30 p.m. School of Education Student Awards Dinner (Orton)
6:00 p.m. Possible Johnston Senior Dinner (Alumni House)
Thursday April 19
9:30 a.m.–12:00 p.m. Senior Honors Convocation (Chapel)
1:00–3:00 p.m. Students of Color Recognition Ceremony (Chapel)
3:00–4:00 p.m. Lavender Recognition Ceremony (TBD)
3:00–4:00 p.m. School of Education Lineup
4:00–6:00 p.m. School of Education Commencement (Greek Theater)
6:30–8:00 p.m. Departmental receptions and dinners for College of Arts and Sciences (TBD)
6:30–8:00 p.m. Proposed President’s Dinner (TBD)
Friday April 20
10:00–11:30 a.m. Baccalaureate for all students (Chapel)
1:00–2:00 p.m. Legacy Medallion Ceremony (Alumni House)
3:00–4:00 p.m. CAS Commencement Lineup
4:00–6:30 p.m. CAS Commencement (Greek Theater)
6:30–8:00 p.m. Celebration Reception for CAS graduates and their families (Orton Center)
Saturday April 21
11:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m. School of Business Brunch (Orton)
1:00–3:00 p.m. Johnston Commencement (Bekins Lawn)
3:00–4:00 p.m. School of Business Commencement Lineup
4:00–6:30 p.m. School of Business Commencement (Greek Theater)