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Frequently Asked Questions
Senior (Undergraduate) Commencement 2013
The Senior (Undergraduate) Commencement ceremony is always held on Mother's Day and for this coming year it will be held on Sunday, May 12, 2013. Seniors must be at the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena (just one mile from the Gonzaga campus) in their academic attire no later than 9:00 a.m. The doors to the Arena actually open at 8:00 a.m. The ceremony begins with an academic procession at 9:35 a.m. and the speaking part of the ceremony is scheduled to begin at 10:00 a.m. If the Senior student has special needs for seating or the stage, the Senior should contact Susie Prusch at 509-313-5571 or firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible. There is good access and seating for guests with disabilities. Students may invite as many guests as they wish and tickets are not required. We estimate that the ceremony will be over by 1:00-1:15 p.m. and it is followed by a social held in the Field House of The Martin Centre back at the Gonzaga campus. The social is a time for graduates to hug, kiss, take photographs, introduce their parents to favorite faculty members, and to say good-bye - we expect that the social will be over by about 2:45 p.m.
Parents usually start arriving on Friday afternoon. (A number of the Senior activities scheduled for the week before Commencement are really geared to the Seniors and NOT their parents.) For those parents who have Seniors who will be engaged in volunteer or service opportunities after graduation, we invite them to attend a Social Justice Missioning ceremony at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, May 10, in University Chapel. There will be an ROTC Commissioning ceremony for those members of ROTC who will be graduating and this, too, will be held on Friday, May 10, at 5:15 p.m. in st. Aloysius Church. The first event to which all of the Seniors and their guests are invited is the Dessert Social hosted by Student Life on Friday evening. This Social is held from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. at Bozarth, our conference and retreat center just north of Spokane, and all Seniors and their parents are invited to attend. The last scheduled event for EVERYONE for the weekend is the Champagne Social held just after the Commencement ceremony on Sunday (estimated to run from 1:15 to 2:45 p.m.). There will be a Pinning Ceremony in St. Aloysius Church on Sunday afternoon at 3:00 p.m. for those nursing Seniors who have just received their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree and their guests. Reminder: Commencement is held on Mother's Day and many families make plans for a combined celebration at one of our local restaurants after the social - if reservations are required, don't delay in making them.
The Baccalaureate Mass will be held on Saturday, May 11, 2013, of the Commencement Weekend and graduates and their guests of all faith traditions are invited to attend this Mass where we ask God's blessing on our graduates. The Mass will be held in the McCarthey Athletic Center (doors will open at 12:15 p.m.) and will begin at 1:30 p.m. Students may invite as many guests as they wish to the Mass and tickets will not be required for admission. Students wear their academic attire for the Mass and line up in the gym in The Martin Centre no later than 1:00 p.m. - the graduates will be seated with each other on the main floor of the McCarthey Athletic Center.
There are sure to be but many of these functions or activities tend to be confined to a particular group of Seniors or to a department or school and we are not always privy to these plans. Seniors will know what is going on and it is best to check with them. On the official Commencement calendar, please make note of: The Social Justice Missioning Ceremony for Seniors who will be engaged in volunteer or service opportunities after they graduate and before they begin a career or continue their education will be held in the University Chapel at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, May 10. The ROTC Commissioning Ceremony will take place on Friday, May 10, in St. Aloysius Church at 5:15 p.m. The Presidential Reception and The Toast to the Seniors will take place on Saturday, May 11, in the Field House of The Martin Centre from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Senior nursing students will have their Pinning Ceremony on Sunday, May 12, in St. Aloysius Church and we anticipate that this will be held at 3:00 p.m. I will post any other events here as I become of aware of them.
Rehearsal will be held in the McCarthey Athletic Center (not in the Arena because we would have to rent the Arena for a rehearsal!) on Friday, May 10, from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. All Seniors should plan to attend the rehearsal because detailed information will be given, questions are answered, and those all-important "how to wear your academic attire" instructions are given. There are exceptions, however! If a Senior has a final examination during that time or has work commitments, the Senior should plan on taking the exam at the regularly scheduled time or be at work. Those few Seniors can get the information about the ceremony from friends.
The Deans all hope and pray that they pronounce every name properly and they practice with a large stack of name cards for a month prior to Commencement. If you have a wonderful and unusual name, you could make it easier on the Deans by giving them a simple way to pronounce your name. Please bear in mind that the pronunciation explanations at the bottom of the page in the dictionary do not readily come to mind to a Dean who is having to read hundreds of names. You could simplify matters by letting the Dean know (for example) that the last name Krusee is pronounced like this: crew c or Prusch is pronounced like: brush with a p. Get this information to your Dean so that s/he has time to practice.
Gonzaga hosts a day called Senior Fest which will be held on Wednesday, February 6, 2013, in the Globe room of the CAT (the Cataldo Dining Hall) on the GU campus. Senior Fest is envisioned as one-stop shopping for the graduation needs of our students. We invite an assortment of vendors to show our students their products or services. There will be a number of departments and organizations from Gonzaga who will be offering services and information to our Seniors for their graduation and commencement needs as well as advice as they choose to start a career, further their education, or participate in a volunteer activity for the next year or two. The focal point of the whole day is the ordering of academic attire and students will be purchasing academic attire made entirely from recycled material. The fabric will be a non-shiny royal blue with a matte finish which is almost completely wrinkle free. The undergraduate academic attire cost will $74.50 (this includes tax) and payment can be made with cash, check, VISA or MasterCard - debit or credit. Academic attire will be distributed to the students in The Martin Centre 2nd floor entrance to the pool bleachers on Friday, May 3, and Monday, May 6, from 11 am to 3 pm, Thursday, May 9 from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. and on Friday, May 10 from 2:30 to 6:00 pm.
CEWard-National is the firm which handles the selling of academic attire and the graduation announcements and invitations. Some time in the fall, that firm will be sending the parents of all of our graduating Seniors order forms and information about the announcements and invitations. Parents are usually a bit more interested in the ordering of invitations and that is why this information is sent home. I will have samples on display. CEWard-National will be at Senior Fest on Wednesday, Feb. 6, to take orders for academic attire and there will be an opportunity for students to order announcements/invitations at that time for Commencement if they wish. For those students who are unable to make it to Senior Fest, they may place their orders for their academic attire on-line or by mail. Jostens will be at Senior Fest to sell class rings. I will notify Seniors about any additional dates when this firm will be on campus.
Family and friends may approach the stage and take pictures or a video; we ask everyone to be aware of other photographers and audience viewing. There will be a professional photographic team that will be taking a formal picture of every graduate as well as a candid shot. Order forms will be sent to the graduate during the summer from Image Studios in Moscow, Idaho (208-882-5594). You are under no obligation to order the pictures but I can tell you that, in the past, the pictures have been very good. Image Studios will offer a video copy of the Commencement ceremony for sale when they send picture proofs.
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