Changes in winter graduation ceremonies


File Photo/The Lion's Roar

The university will live stream commencement on different media platforms. Multiple changes will be happening to the upcoming Fall 2019 commencement.

The university is presenting a new graduation arrangement for its students and guests.

This semester, commencement will be separated into two ceremonies. Both ceremonies will take place in the University Center on North Campus on Dec. 14. The first ceremony will begin at 10 a.m. and will consist of students who are graduating within the Colleges of Business, Education and Science & Technology. The second ceremony will be held at 5 p.m. for graduates within the Colleges of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences and Nursing & Health Sciences.

Dr. Kay Maurin, chief enrollment management officer, explained that the safety and enjoyment of guests and graduating students was in mind when considering the benefits that would accompany two smaller ceremonies rather than one large ceremony.

“The decision was made as part of Southeastern’s ongoing efforts to ensure a safe, high-quality experience for our graduates and guests,” explained Maurin. “The intent is to maintain Southeastern’s traditions, including each graduate having their name read as they walk across the stage, while improving the comfort level of guests.”

Maurin was able to shed more light on the decision-making process and who contributed to the changes for the divided commencement ceremonies.

“The decision to divide the large ceremony into two smaller ones was based on input from students, faculty and staff focus groups, as well as feedback from guests,” shared Maurin.

Maurin clarified that parking arrangements for the event will not change from past commencements, but additional outdoor lighting will be provided for the evening graduation ceremony.

“Parking will remain the same as previous commencements with University Police assistance – once parking is filled around the University Center, guests will be directed to locations via North General Pershing and SGA Drive,” explained Maurin. “Lion Traxx buses will be used for both ceremonies. Additional lighting at bus stops will be used at the evening ceremony.”

Considering the changes, Maurin shared that graduates and guests can look forward to an enjoyable experience with refreshments, the opportunity to buy last-minute gifts and additional safety procedures.

“A wonderful event,” shared Maurin. “The event timeline will remain the same but expect a shorter ceremony. Guests can purchase last-minute grad gifts and light refreshments from our Campus Bookstore stations located on the upper levels. Safety measures remain in place, such as bag checks at guest entries. For the most up-to-date information, students and guests should check Southeastern’s commencement webpage.”

Maurin also mentioned that the university is anticipating one guest speaker that will be speaking at both graduation ceremonies, the official announcement for which will come from the Office of the President.

These changes will remain in place for all future winter commencements. For spring commencements, the arrangement will be similar, but the colleges will be switched. Graduates within the Colleges of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences and Nursing & Health Sciences will walk in the morning ceremony, while students graduating within the Colleges of Business, Education and Science & Technology will walk in the evening.

On the day of commencement, there will be multiple links available for guests who are not attending the ceremony to watch it via livestream on the homepage of the university’s website, and on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @OurSoutheastern.