Saturday, December 20, 2008

New Thing #344--Commencement

Today Son Brian became a graduate of the University of Missouri.

Mizzou is a big school, and even though fewer people graduate in December, there would still be a lot of students for a campus-wide ceremony. Instead, each college has its own convocation ceremony. The one we went to was held this afternoon in Jesse Auditorium.

About 200 students marched in at the beginning of the ceremony, all looking proud to be there. After the opening ceremonies, speeches, and student presentations, it was time for the graduating seniors to walk across the stage and receive their diploma.

The presentations were done by department. As each department was called, the graduates lined up at the steps to the stage. The announcer was at a podium at stage left; at the other end the dignitaries and faculty lined up to congratulate the students. As each student reached the announcer, they gave their name card to her. After she read the name, it took a good 30 seconds for the graduate to walk across the stage and shake the hand of each of the people at the other end.

Some students had quite a cheering section. Others didn't have much at all. There were eight of us (family and friends) waiting to applaud when Brian's name was read. I clapped loudly and gave a polite "whoo hoo". Brian worked hard for his diploma!

After Brian crossed the stage, there were still several departments to go. I began to feel sorry for the students who didn't seem to have someone in the audience to acknowledge their accomplishments. I decided to be a one-person cheering section, and I clapped for graduates who didn't have anyone to clap for them. It actually made the ceremony go faster!

At the end of the presentation of students, they announced the "turning of the tassel", had a short benediction, and then it was time for the recessional song. All of the people in the audience hurried out to meet the new graduates.


  1. What a nice thing to do. That was really thoughtful. :)

  2. Congratulations on having a college grad. I'm sure you worked very hard to get your son to this place.

  3. My boss' son also graduated in that ceremony.

    I like the idea of applauding for each graduate. That was very kind and thoughtful of you.